An ethnographic study on the employment issues facing lower achieving young adults who are deaf, ten years after leaving a transitional program
The purpose of this study was to learn about the employment directions, the employment experiences and employment issues young adults who are deaf and lower achieving face after leaving a transitional program. In-depth, open-ended interviews were conducted with six former students who attended the Program for Hearing Impaired (PHI) at Northern Illinois University (NIU) between the years 1979-1981. Videotapes and transcripts of these in-depth interviews were reviewed and analyzed to generate themes regarding the employment experiences and employment concerns that were common to the informants. The informants encountered a number of employment challenges over the first decade of work. They used a variety of formal and informal strategies to meet these challenges including professional support services, networking with family and friends, and changing employment in hopes of obtaining a better job. Additionally, a number of themes were found to be consistent for all informants including internal and external locus of control, entitlement and empowerment. Results indicate that, overall, the informants were successful and satisfied with their employment.