PROJECT SEARCH: “Want to work?”

Have you heard about Project SEARCH? What better way to learn more about one-year programme, supporting young people with additional needs to gain skills and experience than from the fantastic students themselves. The course, aimed at helping students move into sustainable employment is delivered in partnership with Shetland College UHI, Shetland Islands Council and NHS. We thought we would ask the students their thoughts on the past year and were delighted to hear what they had to say:

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Frazer Pottinger scanning journals

Student on course: “Project Search has helped me in several ways. It helped me get an impression of working in an office environment and allowed me to gain more skills and experiences which would be useful to put in my CV. This course had encouraged a better chance of me getting a job. I have received great support from my lecturers when I needed it. I have met great people during the course and my placements as they provided me with help when needed and made me feel welcome as I joined Project Search and my placements.”

NB making hummous

Natasha Bruce making hummous 

Natasha Bruce:  “Before coming here I didn't have much self confidence and now that I have joined Project SEARCH it's given me the self confidence.  It has helped me get out and about and out of the house.  I have also made a lot of new friends.  I have learnt new skills and I have an idea about what I want to do in terms of work.  Since doing the different job placements I have surprised myself on the range of things I can do.  I am now the preferred candidate for a job I really wanted thanks to the help of Project SEARCH, they helped me with interview prep and got me ready and motivated to get back into paid work.”

Roan Polson:  “Project SEARCH is a college course that helps you get a paid job and hopefully at the end of the course we'll all have full time jobs.  I have enjoyed coming to Project SEARCH and have enjoyed the college work.  I couldn't see myself working as a cleaner in the hostel but I have learnt that I can work independently.  I can guarantee you that no job is going to be easy but Project SEARCH has made it easier because I can actually work on my own now.” 


Roan using extendable mop

Roan Polson using extendable mop 

Frazer Pottinger:  “The work has been good I get to do a lot of different things.  At the library I enjoy the peace and quiet and talking to the librarians.  Project SEARCH has been good so far, I have enjoyed having something to do every day.  The aim is to get a job and it makes me feel happy that I have got good feedback and will be able to get a job.”

With placements in administration, maintenance, catering and more paired up with excellent support from Allison and Kari, it is clear that the students have gained confidence, forged friendships and increased employability skills on this course. We are delighted that two of the current students have secured employment and wish them all the best in their new roles.  The remaining students who are nearing the end of the year are focused on their job search and we’re sure they’ll share the success of their friends soon.  At the end of the course students benefit from 10 months person centred follow on support whether in employment or looking for work.  If you think you might be interested in this course, please feel free to contact Allison or Kari on 01595 744170. 

Shetland Islands Council have made this fantastic video where you can also find out more about the course.