Nolan Sherman arrives early at a Cub Foods in Lakeville and makes his rounds to check and empty what seems like two dozen garbage containers. The floors in customer areas are spotless and shine like wax.
To find and maintain this new job, Sherman worked with ProAct employment specialist Brandon Blevins. “We would meet weekly and look through jobs, mainly on Indeed,” said Blevins. “That’s where we found this one. We applied and got an interview and they offered Nolan a job.”
Transition student, Pre-ETS program
Sherman, who lives in Lakeville, will graduate next year from the Transition Plus program for young adults with disabilities in Dakota County. His job support comes via ProAct’s Pre-Employment Transition Services or Pre-ETS.
Blevins said he caught on quickly, and managers at the grocery always have good things to say about Sherman. “He’s a great worker and it makes it better that Nolan likes the job.”
Some of his transition program teachers have seen him at work, and have complimented him. Laboring for seven-hour shifts, he collects and sanitizes shopping carts as well, and cleans bathrooms.
Advocacy, support to get and stay employed
“Everyone is different. Some might need more support than others,” said Blevins. “At ProAct, one of the best things we do is advocate for our people.” Translated, that means making sure people are treated right in the workplace while building relationships with employers and the community.
After some initial job coaching, Blevins makes twice monthly visits to check on Sherman’s progress, help communicate with management and assist with other needs. Cub also has good natural supports or help from other staff when needed. As Sherman works to improve his performance, he is open to taking on other tasks, such as stocking merchandise.
ProAct develops a job placement plan for each individual they serve, Blevins explains.
“They just think I’m a good person,” said Sherman, referring to his employer. His previous job experiences include frame assembly at a shop and working through a Tree Trust program.
Sherman said he’s thinking about college, and moving out of his parents’ house in the next two years.