Project SEARCH

Project SEARCH is a unique one-year school-to-work program designed to help young adults with significant disabilities make successful transitions from school to productive post-school life. Project SEARCH learning takes place entirely in the workplace.

Employment immersion facilitates a seamless combination of classroom instruction, career exploration, and on-the-job training and support through worksite internships. The program model includes an extensive period of training and career exploration, innovative adaptations, long-term job coaching, and continuous feedback from teachers, job coaches, and employers. 

There are currently more than 600 Project SEARCH sites operating across the United States and throughout the world. Research, much of it conducted by Ivymount staff, indicates that participation in Project SEARCH results in improved vocational skills and employment outcomes.

Join us for a January 11, 2023 Project SEARCH virtual information session.

Contact Lu Merrick

Ivymount Project SEARCH Programs

In 2010, Ivymount School became the first non-public school serving multiple jurisdictions to become a Project SEARCH replication site. Ivymount School is proud to collaborate with SEEC, a local nonprofit that provides community-based employment support to transitioning youth and adults, and business partners including the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Smithsonian Institute, and

Montgomery County Government. 

Of the more than 150 interns who have graduated from Ivymount Project SEARCH programs, 66% have secured paid employment at their host site or in the community.

Apply to Project SEARCH

To apply for an internship with Project SEARCH, download and save the application and questionnaire to your computer. Complete them and submit via email to Lu Merrick.

Funding for Families

Funding partners include the Maryland Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA), DC Rehabilitative Services Administration, and the Maryland Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS).

For Maryland Families

Department of Rehabilitation Services

Developmental Disabilities Administration

​For DC Families

Department on Disabilities Services

Rehabilitation Services Administration


Become a Host Business

Becoming a Project SEARCH Business Partner will benefit your company in many ways.

  • Access to a new, diverse, talent stream with skills that match labor needs
  • Gain intern/ employees with disabilities who serve as a role model for customers
  • Access to a demographic of the economy with intense buying power: people with disabilities and their families represent  one of the fastest growing market segments in the US
  • Experience increased regional and national recognition through marketing of this unique program
  • Performance and retention in some high-turnover, entry-level positions increase dramatically

Interested in joining the Project SEARCH Community? Contact Lu Merrick, 301-326-9195.