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Brewing Independence

Mary Visel/Kimberly Samson

Dexter High School

Students of the High Needs Resource Room have previously run Brewing Independence as part of their daily routine. This small business was originally started by the staff. Since the transition of teachers, the supplies bought independently by the previous teacher are no longer available. We are seeking $450 to start the program again so it can become independent and self sustaining. We have a vocational training program where students do jobs around the building such as assisting in stocking items in the cafeteria, running copies, delivering mail, etc, but due to a variety different student’s abilities and times they are available to take vocational training, not all of these jobs are always available on a consistent basis. Brewing Independence would provide a consistent, and sustainable program that can assist students in learning these specific job skills and after high school, they have a large opportunity to transfer these skills to similar job settings.


This grant would provide continued benefit to students by providing the High Needs Resource Room with materials necessary for running a small business that would teach students money management skills and job skills so they could generalize these learned skills to the outside world. According to ADA Participatory Action Research Consortium, only 30.5% of individuals with disabilities are employed in Michigan compared to a 34.6% National Average. In the Detroit area, only 18.7% are employed. By practicing work skills, and being able to generalize these skills into the outside world, we can provide individuals with disabilities an even greater opportunity for employment. This grant could assist our students in developing a stronger likelihood of successful employment by providing them with the tools and supplies necessary for a vocational based program.

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