What We Do

Summer Vocational Programs

Variety’s Vocational, Career Exploration, and Work Readiness Programs are designed to teach job readiness skills and socialization to children with developmental disabilities in the “transition ages” of 16 to 21 years old.

The 2019 Summer Vocational Program will run from Monday-Friday from June 24 to August 9.

Career Exploration 

  • Students 16-18 work in vocational areas- Kitchen, snack bar, crew cleaning, clerical/office skills, maintenance, woodworking, manufacturing/ quality control and greenhouse/gardening.
  • Pop-up shops in community provide retail and customer service experience.
  • Social skills related to community employment settings.
  • Emphasis of the program – “soft skills” and career exploration.

Work Readiness 

As students progress, emphasis is placed on skill attainment & areas of job interest. Students pick two areas of interest or specialty.

  •  Students 18-21 work in off-campus job sites and on-grounds areas based on their interests.
  • Emphasis of the program is skill acquisition, work based learning experiences and appropriate community workplace behaviors.

Culinary Skills Class

  • Program is limited to 5 students.
  • Students must be able to work independently in a group and have mastered soft skills.
  • Emphasis is on increasing culinary skills, finding tasks suited to each individual and functioning in a work environment.
  • Curriculum includes: introduction, safety skills, accurate measuring and recipes, baking techniques, cakes, cookies and cupcakes.
  • Students run full production with bakery sales weekly and provide baked goods to pop-up shops.

Jobs at Camp

  • Students apply/interview for available positions individualized for that student based on skills and interests
  • Students must have completed the Introductory Program to be considered for the “Jobs at Camp” positions
  • Students must be able to function independently with daily check-ins with boss and job coach.
  • A stipend will be paid to the student for his/her seasonal work
  • Possible Positions: Kitchen Assistant, Housekeeping Assistant, Maintenance Worker, Landscape Assistant

To apply for this program or to receive more information, please contact Jean Merkl at: jean.merkl@varietyphila.org or (610) 584-4366, Ext 201

Career Exploration and Work Readiness Programs: $4,000
Culinary Skills Class: $4,000
Jobs at Camp: $2,000

Initial payment of $1,000 required by start of program with the balance due by the end of the program (August 9, 2019).


Acceptance is conditional upon a student interview, completion of vocational assessment information, and funding approval by the School District and/or deposit.

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