Dana was referred to Cornucopia in 2005, to prepare for the world of work. At the start, Dana participated in training opportunities at Eliza Jennings Senior Care Home and Jennings Center for Older Adults. Afterwards, Dana was hired by Starbucks and worked for 1 ½ years as a café attendant. After being laid off from Starbucks, Dana returned to Cornucopia’s training program to refine her communication skills, judgement, problem-solving abilities, and adaptability. Cornucopia staff Stephanie Herriott, Carol Jones, and Jerry Karlin have been a strong support team and were influential in Dana’s development of work readiness skills.
Dana’s desire and relentless spirit to succeed in a competitive employment setting has contributed to her success. Her one-year work experience at Jennings Center, interacting with patients while performing housekeeping/laundry work, positioned Dana for community employment in the hospitality field. With the support of Employment Specialist Jerry Karlin, Dana landed a position at Embassy Suites Hotel where her title is House Person.
Dana is happy with her job, works extremely hard and pushes her limits to succeed. Her responsibilities include cleaning and maintaining the public areas of the hotel: trash removal, stocking and maintaining room attendant carts and supply rooms, and cleaning floors and surface areas such as hand railings. Dana’s supervisors really appreciate Dana’s dependability, work ethic and attention to detail. She continues to work over 32 hours a week and has recently moved into her own apartment not far from the hotel.
Case Manager Stephanie Herriott, who has worked very closely with Dana, commented “Dana has a heart for people with disabilities!” In fact, she has her own website known as E.A.R.T.H. (Every Autistic Child Reaches Thoughts of Humanitarianism), devoted to assisting children with autism, http://www.breakthroughautismtoday.org/. Dana also enjoys writing and drawing. Congratulations Dana on your great achievements and successes!