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Thread: Right advice in Employabilty skills for the disabled?

  1. #1

    Right advice in Employabilty skills for the disabled?

    I ve just been approached by a slightly disabled lad who has told me that he admires me being in a wheelchair teaching electrical and plumbing certificate courses he wishes to pursue this 3 year course. I have told him that I had been working in construction fully abled for over 20 years and that even at the age of 44 this work was physically taking it’s toll. As from now I am not physically abled to do practical work.
    Him being able to pursue and qualify as an electrician or plumber does not worry me however not being able to physically climb up a ladder or scaffold does, my opinion was that his employability status in the trade as an installer will be undermined. As he is allowed by law to choose any course since achieving the entrance criteria he has a free choice, however one must be realistic about employability status, just by being able to climb up a ladder with difficulty in my opinion does not make him suitable. the work place is not like being in a school workshop, fully supervised. If he likes the subject he is more than welcome to pursue the course but in a different capacity such as electrical draftsman, or bench technician or any other role in which he can excel and not barely get by.

  2. #2
    Senior Member flying's Avatar
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    I agree with your assessment. I've been a builder for 25 years. Electricians working in a drop ceilings go up and down latter's all day. And yes I can relate to the toll this kind of work takes on ones body. Young people have some very unrealistic ideas Good luck
    T12L1 Incomplete Still here This is the place to be 58 years old

  3. #3
    The reality is that he'll never make any real money since those trades frequently involve climbing, crawling and other difficult maneuvering, in all kinds of conditions. But there's always the possibility of self employment, and letting others doing the dirty work.

  4. #4
    Perhaps he could do something related, like electrical contracting. I know a number of people in chairs who have completed course works for contracting and estimating in one of the building trades, although to be honest, most worked in that business as an AB prior to their SCI.

    (KLD)

  5. #5
    as a person who spent 25 plus years working in all kinds of telco work. i worked as a lineman/splicer/repairman/installation/testing of special ckts from NY to all reaches of the world. The only work that i could have done pre and post injury was the troubleshooting testing via a pc with proprietary software, since you were sitting, but you needed a functioning sharp and focused brain, something pain and pain meds can ruin.

    also check out one of the guys here gooeyduck, he is a mechanical engineer and i believe a pilot and more. so he has a lot of knowledge on what work will and wont work out.
    a bad reality in the world of AB working bums, if they thing you wont go down a manhole due to worry of ruining their shoes,suit, the workers will play games so it looks good from your location,but in reality there is a scam set up, whicjh will make them more money and show you as incompetent. i speak from years of experience, if your job requires or it's better that you check certain things yourself and you have to rey on someone else, your f%cked. you scrore many points if you find a scam that is costing the company money.
    your worth in the trade is diminished if they can pull the wool over your eyes, or get away with shortcuts/shoddy workmanship . if you cant get to every inch of the job a AB engineer would, your fate is in your employees doing the right thing and not taking a shortcut,since it wont be seen.This is not good since it will cause early failure .
    The slings the crane engineers used that dropped the buildings on the east side of NYC,which killed a couple people and millions if damage is a perfect example, i could see from 10 feet away that it was not up to standards for a $100 job, and they were using it on a mutimillion dolllar job , with zero room for error
    a radio personality,or something where you have total control over the product that gives you your paycheck and raises
    cauda equina

  6. #6
    But how is Malta? Are disable people back in line for work or do they get any help to get a job.
    If they are back in line he better find an education where he can be the best or he will be unemployed the rest of his life.
    TH 12, 43 years post

  7. #7
    Here a company of over 100 people must employ a disabled person. Companies have Gov benefits too. The worst off are the mental disabled as employers find the safety aspect
    a bit too much of a risk. My experience is at the end of the day empathy for your disability will wear off in time and they will see you as a problem if your performance is not up to standard. i would personally like to find a job which does not tax my disabilty. One must be realistic about these issues. As to the construction industry where labour work is involved, there are many abuses, many contractors employ low skill workers for heavy duty work and low pay, here the work conditions in construction are quite hard.workers quite tough and rough and mean too. During my time i ve been swore at and even had to stand my ground in a near fist fight. Since entering the teaching practice it was like entering a new world.
    Last edited by peterf; 10-07-2011 at 09:22 AM.

  8. #8
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    I'm in a similar circumstance regarding the disability and the desire to continue working physically. It can be done with a lot of effort and I would consider doing it while I was young even as an SCI, although I've always been an independent contractor and never relied on employment for work. However, I've since moved more toward the BIM and design side and have found it nearly as rewarding and a lot less physically demanding. Although I still do an occasional remodel, and I work regularly welding and fabricating in steel building offroad and racing cars.

    Suggest Mechanical, Civil Engineering or Architecture degrees for long term career paths.

    I still wouldn't try to turn him away from his goals if he decides he still want to do the apprenticeship. It will still be valuable experience for him toward doing any legitimate engineering degree.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by gpbullock View Post
    I'm in a similar circumstance regarding the disability and the desire to continue working physically. It can be done with a lot of effort and I would consider doing it while I was young even as an SCI, although I've always been an independent contractor and never relied on employment for work. However, I've since moved more toward the BIM and design side and have found it nearly as rewarding and a lot less physically demanding. Although I still do an occasional remodel, and I work regularly welding and fabricating in steel building offroad and racing cars.

    Suggest Mechanical, Civil Engineering or Architecture degrees for long term career paths.

    I still wouldn't try to turn him away from his goals if he decides he still want to do the apprenticeship. It will still be valuable experience for him toward doing any legitimate engineering degree.
    Sounds like we've got a similar outlook, gp.... But different experiences, no doubt!

    In a nutshell, I got paralyzed while I was in college. Was into off-road racing a lot and had to switch from bikes to 4 wheels. I pursued a ME degree to learn better how to design racin' vehicles. Continued racin' and designing/building vehicles, while really in denial of my condition (which hurt me in ways I can't regain). I just felt I had to accomplish as much as anyone else - period. And that often required ignoring my health.

    Got a job with a #1 team after college, designing off-road vehicles. As the new kid on the block, I was let go when a recession hit and we lost some major sponsors. Didn't feel comfortable with such a volatile career, so I changed careers. Overworked myself (guess I'm a workaholic) again to "succeed." Made lots of money, but my health and lifestyle was really suffering. So I decided to work from home, self-employed. It's been a long road, especially learning the sales and marketing thing, which doesn't come easy for a guy who was subjected to engineering school...

    Presently, I'm finding that I have become too physically inactive, weak, etc. (a major cause of this is some life-changing events that occurred a couple of years ago). I need to get back on my feet, so to speak. My poor physical health is affecting EVERYTHING and it has become my #1 priority to get it back, better than before.

    It's a trade-off that I should have realized and done something about when I was much younger, but I somehow managed (or faked it) well enough.

    Sorry for the longer-than-intended post!
    Last edited by a la carte; 10-12-2011 at 05:06 PM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Van Quad's Avatar
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    The only two quads I know who have become millionaires post injury are both Certified General Accountants. They went from logging & construction respectively and nobody has questioned their abilities.

    Career choices post injury are very difficult. I went into digital mapping from land surveying and found I was constantly underemployed.

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