Leading employers join universities as part of new effort in Boston led by the National Organization on Disability
BOSTON (February 15, 2018) – Five major Boston-area employers have joined a new pilot program designed by the National Organization on Disability (NOD) to mitigate the recruitment challenges employers are facing in an incredibly competitive talent market with a 3.9% unemployment rate, while reversing the bleak national employment outcomes for college graduates with disabilities. NOD President Carol Glazer today announced that Boston Children’s Hospital, Deloitte, Partners HealthCare, Raytheon and Spaulding Rehabilitation Network have signed onto the Campus to Careers initiative that aims to place more qualified students with disabilities into meaningful careers and to develop new methods of college recruiting to address the issue long-term.
Campus to Careers is being funded, in part, thanks to the generosity of The Coca-Cola Foundation, which provided a $400,000 lead grant to kick-start the innovative, three-year pilot program.
“While there is a strong accommodations program for students with disabilities on campus, there is less focus on getting these students career-ready and connecting them to employers that welcome and support talent with disabilities,” said NOD President Carol Glazer. “The result is that only 25-percent of college graduates with disabilities are working. Increasingly, smart employers like Boston Children’s Hospital, Deloitte, Partners HealthCare, Raytheon, and Spaulding Rehabilitation Network recognize there is a fertile opportunity to secure top talent from this untapped pool.”
The Campus to Careers pilot, starting with the talent needs of organizations such as Boston Children’s Hospital, Deloitte, Partners HealthCare, Raytheon, and Spaulding Rehabilitation Network will develop a recruitment pipeline for employers to reach college students with disabilities from top colleges and universities in Boston and the surrounding areas.
“Making the world a safer place requires that we build a diverse workforce of the best talent, “ said Steve Ratner, Vice President of Human Resources and Security at Raytheon’s Integrated Defense Systems. “This partnership gives Raytheon direct access to highly capable candidates – while supporting our local Massachusetts community.”
“At Partners HealthCare, pairing our work with our mission is very important to us. Our community represents patients and people from all walks of life and we strive to reflect that synthesis in our workforce. Recognizing the talents and strengths found in the candidate pool of people with disabilities is one of our business imperatives,” said Oz Mondejar, Vice President, Talent Acquisition at Partners HealthCare. “We are proud to be one of the founding employer partners with Campus to Careers and recognize that our role is to create and promote access to opportunities for candidates of all abilities.”
To design and implement the Campus to Careers pilot, NOD partnered with Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities (COSD) an organization that has worked for 17 years to connect such college students and graduates with employers, and the University of Massachusetts Medical School’s Work Without Limits (WWL) initiative, a Massachusetts consortium of employers dedicated to strengthening disability workforce inclusion practices.
Campus to Careers’ college and university partners include:
- Brandeis University
- College of the Holy Cross
- Northeastern University
- University of Massachusetts Boston
- University of Massachusetts Amherst
- University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
- Westfield State University
- Worcester State University
“Employers are eager to hire graduates of all abilities from Boston’s rich ecosystem of higher-ed institutions,” said Kathleen Petkauskos, Director, UMass Medical School’s Work Without Limits. “By better connecting colleges’ disability and career services offices, we’re introducing hiring employers to qualified talent with disabilities, who previously may have been overlooked. Campus to Careers will forge an effective model to sustain recruitment pipelines to qualified candidates with disabilities on campus.”
For 35 years, NOD has worked with leading employers and partnered with educational and philanthropic institutions to pilot innovative approaches to disability inclusion, scaling effective models for broader impact. NOD has helped dozens of major employers hire individuals with disabilities based on its proven suite of Professional Services – a demand-driven approach to filling positions.
Become a Campus to Careers Employer:
In addition to gaining access to quality talent with disabilities on campus, the Campus to Careers project team will work with participating employers to fine-tune recruitment and hiring practices to more effectively reach students and graduates with disabilities. As well, employers will gain new and enhanced relationships with local campus disability and career services offices. Participating employers also receive broad recognition for their commitment to disability inclusive hiring.
Employers interested in joining the Campus to Careers program, can contact campus2careers@NOD.org to learn more.