The goal of our Transitional Program is to lay the groundwork for a successful transition into adult life after school ends for students with developmental disabilities.

This program provides students with early work experience and post high school job preparedness training while on-site at Terravine Growers, a local community business supported by the Trellis Center. Students participate in Life and Social, Job and Career, Agricultural, and Entrepreneurship skills programming. The Transitional Program explores every part of what it means to be a successfully employed adult; topics include but are not limited to good hygiene, proper attire, effective communication and appropriate social skills, following and giving directions, time management, healthy eating, maintaining a personal and professional budget, identifying strengths and weaknesses, thinking critically, and navigating the subtleties and off-script moments of a job interview. Participants leave the program with a resume, recommendation letter, and a hands-on assessment of their abilities along with the skills to be successful in an agricultural or community job and the experience to monetize their talents or interests as a supplementary and/or sustainable form of income.

The Transitional Program is tailored to each student’s ability level, skills, and interests. The program aims to assist the students in identifying their strengths and interests while exploring what post-high school jobs or careers appeal to them. Through this exploration, students are able to work towards a goal that is meaningful to them.

Through interweaving programming curriculums, transitional students learn what makes an employee appealing to potential employers and how to develop these attributes themselves through the Life and Social Skills Curriculum. They practice the self-awareness, social, written and verbal communication abilities necessary to seek employment and successfully complete an application, resume, or job interview through the Job and Career Skills Curriculum. They experience the hands-on employment, decision-making, and teamwork skills necessary to work alongside others through applying what they’ve learned in a business setting in the Agriculture Curriculum. Finally, they gain an understanding of how to, should a career option for their area of interest not exist, take their interests and skills and monetize them in the Entrepreneurship Program. All of these programs incorporate soft skills, technical skills, lessons, hands-on activities, indoor and outdoor elements, and real work tasks to generalize the skills across multiple environments and situations.

The Transitional Program operates from mid-September to mid-June and follows the Ellensburg and Kittitas School Districts’ calendars. The Transitional Program is in session in the mornings and is incorporated as part of the students’ school day. The High School Transitional Program is accessible through the participants’ IEP funds.

If you or someone you know is interested in attending or have any questions regarding our transitional services, please contact our Program Director, Devin Earlywine, at devin@thetrelliscenter.com