Research Topics

Disability Employment

The Heldrich Center was under contract with Somerset County in central New Jersey to conduct an independent evaluation of the Mental Health Association in New Jersey's (MHANJ) model for assisting people with mental illnesses to become employed. MHANJ implemented supported employment supplemented by a support network of peer counselors who work with people with serious and persistent mental illness to help them return to work.

The Heldrich Center reviewed current practices on serving older workers at community colleges to synthesize what is known about these practices and make recommendations for future practices to better address the particular issues facing older workers at community colleges. This study includes in-depth examinations of initiatives and programs of particular relevance to older workers at community colleges: those that serve dislocated workers and those that serve students with disabilities.

As part of its work under the NTAR Leadership Center for the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy, the Heldrich Center has maintained a strategic focus on older workers, delving into a range of issues connected to the aging workforce, disability, and employment. The Heldrich Center launched the initiative with a December 2010 roundtable entitled, Disability Implications of an Aging Workforce: Developing an Action Strategy.

The Heldrich Center worked closely with the State of New Jersey to complete various tasks related to the state’s Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG) program.

The Heldrich Center will work with Cornell University to develop a "Community of Practice" (CoP) of state officials who share a common interest in initiating, developing, and expanding efforts to make their states “model employers” of individuals with disabilities. The initiative is based on the understanding that there is significant value to states learning from each other with regard to employing people with disabilities and having a forum in which to connect colleagues in this area.