(Dis)abilities + Work + Beaverton = No Problem! Meet Michael Takata, Employed

By The Dirkse CC Team25-m-takata

Michael Takata is a 23 year old from Beaverton who loves trains, is very friendly, warm, endearing and kind to everyone he meets.  As a person affected by Autism, he often will mimic the voice tones of others, frequently lowering and raising his pitch and changing his facial expressions to match the social cues of others.  His disability did not stop him from pursuing his goal of having a job where he could earn his own money, learn new skills and become more independent.

After graduating from Beaverton High School in 2011, he participated in the Beaverton Community Transition Program (BCTP) where he learned life skills and gained work experience through volunteer opportunities in the community.  During this time he was connected by the Oregon Department of Human Services, Vocational Rehabilitation department to Dirkse Counseling and Consulting, Inc. a local agency connecting job seekers with disabilities to employers.  By exploring Michael’s goals, dreams, interests and abilities Dirkse CC found Michael an opportunity to work at the local Walmart Neighborhood Market on SW Murray before he graduated from BCTP in June, 2014.

Today you may see Michael bagging groceries, collecting shopping carts or sprucing up the store with a smile on his face.  “Michael is consistently happy and excited about going to work. He really enjoys getting to assist people in his community with their shopping experience. Michael continues to do well in his job, and is always learning new tasks with the support of his job coaches, and the incredibly supportive staff at Walmart Marketplace” says Dirkse CC Program Director Gabriela Taylor.

Michael is a great example of a successful placement and partnership that includes long-term supports with Self Determination Resources, Inc. (SDRI), a local Support Service Brokerage that assists people with disabilities in achieving choice and control of the supports and resources available to them.  This partnership allows Michael to receive the long-term job coaching needed to help insure his continued growth and success in his position at Walmart Neighborhood Market.

To learn more about employment opportunities, contact Cindy Bahl at 503-258-7715 (cindy@dirksecc.com).