With all of the Columbus Day sales coming to a close and the parade down Fifth Avenue a fleeting memory, I have been reflecting on Columbus, his explorations and its relationship to Vocational Rehabilitation.

Christopher Columbus was one of the world’s most famous explorers. He set out from Europe with the goal of discovering new lands, riches and peoples. He got his tools and his crew together and set sail to explore what became known as the “New World.” He overcame many odds and challenges and persevered when some thought the earth was flat and he would sail over the edge.

In the career search process, our participants set sail on their own personal journey in order to determine what the next step on their career path should be.  They are here overcoming challenges from disabilities that, for them, are like sailing over the edge of the earth. For them, their tools include taking computerized and manual evaluation tests including interest inventories to determine their skills, strengths, and work readiness. Their crew is a trained Vocational Rehabilitation team that guides them through the currents of the assessment process.  In most instances, clients get a first-hand look at different types of training programs, to see if they are the right fit for their career goals.  At ICD, these situational experiences provide in-depth insight into fields such as Building Maintenance, Human Services, Office Computer Technology, and Child Care, among others. Working with a dedicated Vocational Counselor, participants explore their results to see their vocational aptitude, strengths and challenges. From this, a new path is forged to help them on their way to job search success.

While in some locations there is controversy about the celebration of Columbus Day, the fact remains that Christopher Columbus conjures up concepts of exploration and exploration can be invaluable in the job search process. If you would like more information on Diagnostic Evaluations to explore your career path, please feel free to contact ICD Executive Director, Dawn Mastoridis at dmastoridis@icdnyc.org.


Andrea Goldman, Esq. is the Senior Director of Human Resources at ICD and the Director of the Veterans For Employment Program.

AuthorBrigid Maher