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“A life-changing opportunity”
Project SEARCH Graduation _2019_1200x600_Discover-Health.jpg

“A life-changing opportunity”

By Jessica Pickens on May 29, 2019

At the end of each school year, students prepare for the future.

While this time is exciting, there are many unknowns: Will I get a job? Will I succeed in the workforce?

For Project SEARCH interns, they face the future with certainty and are equipped with job skills that other high school graduates may not have.

“Project SEARCH is truly a life-changing opportunity for the student interns from Dorman High School,” said Sam Napier, Project SEARCH instructor at Spartanburg Medical Center.

The Project SEARCH Program is a national job-training program for students with developmental disabilities. The Spartanburg program is a partnership with Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System, Spartanburg School District 6, SC Vocational Rehabilitation and the Upstate Workforce Board.

This partnership with District 6 students was the first in South Carolina, and now other areas around the state have followed. Since the program began, more than 30 students have interned at Spartanburg Medical Center and were hired at the hospital and around the community.

At the hospital, students intern in departments such as the emergency center, endoscopy services, linen services, pediatric rehabilitation or sterile processing.

“Project SEARCH has not only changes the lives of the interns and their families, but it also changes the lives of our associates, patients and visitors who meet with our Project SEARCH interns,” said Gloria Graves, coordinator for Project SEARCH at Spartanburg Medical Center for corporate education.

The 2018-19 class had the opportunity to intern in 14 different departments at the hospital this school year. This included two areas new to the program: Bio-Med and the Spartanburg Hospital for Restorative Care.

Along with learning job skills, the students who participate in the program develop self-confidence, build character and strengthen communication skills.

“Three interns from this class have been hired within Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System,” Napier said. “Their lives have definitely been blessed by this.”

Congratulations to our 2019 Project SEARCH graduates! Here's what they had to say about the program:

 “I really enjoyed meeting the people in different departments. They treated me like an adult and looked past my disability. I gained so much confidence.”

- Britany Partain, Spartanburg Hospital for Restorative Care


“I learned things within myself and skilled I never imagined I could do. It taught me how to be a young adult.”

- Miracle Williams, 5-Tower Mother – Baby Unit


“I liked working in the different departments. I was able to learn how to transport patients and put people at ease.”

- Tasheria Woodruff, Central Patient Transport 


Learn more about Spartanburg Medical Center's Project SEARCH program or e-mail for more information.