Who Are Transition-Aged Youth, and Why is Work Important?

Social Security defines transition-aged youth as individuals aged 14–25 who are making the transition from school to work and/or further education. Transition-aged youth with disabilities face unique challenges in transitioning from school to work, and some may even think working is not part of their future.

Successful entry into the workforce can greatly enhance a person’s long-term earnings potential and quality of life. Summer jobs, internships, and volunteer work can help young people develop job skills, soft skills (learning how to present well to others), gain connections with employers for future job searches, and learn about career choices. Linking knowledge gained at the worksite with a planned program of study increases school attendance and engagement, decreases dropout rates, and even makes it more likely that a student will attend college.

From the Youth Leadership Advisory Team. Read full article here.

High School vs. College: Life Before and After Age 18



Transition to Adult Health Care Videos from The PEAL Center:

A set of resources to help you understand transition to adult health care.

Disability and Transition Youth White Papers:

Pennsylvania Post-Secondary Surveys

Parents and Students:

The Pennsylvania Post-Secondary Survey is a great way for exiting students with an IEP to give DIRECT feedback on their experience in school. Watch this wonderful video that explains the importance:

School Professionals:

It is essential that these survey’s reach students who are typically underrepresented. The resources below summarize strategies recommended by youth and their families for reaching youth who are routinely underrepresented in the post-school survey data:

Managed Care Operations Memorandum:

Waiver Program Information:

Useful Web Links:

Special Needs Financial Planning has been helping families plan for a great life for their child with special needs for over 20 years.  Proper planning provides control and gives authority to define the quality of life for your son or daughter and their siblings as they grow into adulthood and beyond.
Employment Horizons has implemented innovative programs to meet the needs and choices of the people with disabilities we serve, both on-site as well as in the community.
Disability Resources, Inc. is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization established to promote and improve awareness, availability and accessibility of information that can help people with disabilities live, learn, love, work and play independently.
MoneyGeek produces comprehensive financial planning resources for people with disabilities for all stages of life. Their guides entail financial aid and scholarship options, parents and persons with disabilities planning financially for home modifications, and more. (1) Scholarships & Grants for Students with Disabilities (2) Resources & Funding for Independent Living
GoGrad: graduate school involves taking on a financial burden for almost anyone considering further education; for individuals who also have medical expenses, financing both can feel overwhelming. Prospective students will be pleased to know there are a number of scholarships catering to their specific needs. Graduate School Success for Students with Disabilities
College Affordability Guide brings together disparate bodies of data to produce a more holistic (but also focused) view of which colleges are likely to be the best value for the money. The goal of their site is to provide information that will help prospective students find and complete degrees that might actually move their careers forward, so that they may become productive members of society. helps students and parents understand and the opportunities available to them after they graduate from high school, such as college, vocational rehabilitation, employment and independent living. It also helps young people with disabilities develop life skills through hands-on experiences.’s Guide to Transition Planning