TIP SHEET

Adult Career and Continuing Education Services – Vocational Rehabilitation (ACCES-VR)

ACCES-VR, which is part of the New York State Education Department,  
provides job search, educational, and independent living services and supports that help adults with disabilities find employment. ACCES-VR may provide:

  • Money for college programs, job training programs, and supported employment programs
  • Funds for accommodations and assistive technology related to job
  • Assistance with college payments and accommodations
  • Employment opportunities/placement

Eligibility

In order to receive services, you must work with a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC) to determine eligibility based on the following criteria: 

  • Have a disability that interferes with getting or keeping a job
  • Be able to benefit from VR services: can align abilities, interests, and career choice
  • Require vocational rehabilitation to prepare for and secure employment Be able to travel 
  • Be 14 years old to apply (no age cut off)

You may be eligible for services regardless of whether or not you receive benefits 
(SSI/SSDI).


Presumed Eligibility: If you provide proof that you receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) because of your disability, ACCES-VR will assume you are eligible for services.

 

Services Available

If you meet the eligibility requirements, you will work with ACCES-VR to develop an Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE). The IPE will outline your work goal, the steps involved, and the services you will need to achieve that goal. ACCES-VR can pay for certain services, particularly those that are job training and college/vocational school-related. These may include: 

  • A physical and/or psychological examination to determine how your disability affects your employment potential
  • Career counseling, guidance, planning, and referral
  • Assistance with the job search process, such as:
    • Application forms
    • Resumes
    • Interviews
  • On-the-job training at a community college or vocational school
  • Services and supports that will help with training or assessment, such as:
    • Special transportation
    • Attendants, note-takers, and interpreters
    • Books, tools, and equipment
    • Rehabilitative and assistive technology 
  • Assistance with service costs related to employment, such as:
    • Worksite modification
    • Home, van, or other vehicle modification
  • Job placement and retention
  • Follow-up by ACCES-VR counselor to assess job satisfaction or additional needs
  • Supplemental support in college: book vouchers, assistive technology, and other resources
  • Short-term medical intervention not covered by other insurance
     

Application Process

  • If possible, start the process when student is two years away from leaving high school
  • Every school should have an ACCES-VR liaison
  • Persistence and self-advocacy are key. Student must verbally acknowledge that they have a disability
  • Process for being placed in a job training program:
    • Compile documents and fill out application
    • Attend an information session
    • Interview with Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC) Take Diagnostic Vocational Evaluation (between 5 - 12 days) Program placement
    • Program interview
    • Begin!

Documents Needed to Apply

  • State identification (ID)
  • Medical insurance card
  • Individualized Education Program (IEP)
  • Evaluations (psychological, psycho-social)
  • Medical documentation
  • Copy of high school diploma/credential (if relevant)
  • High school transcript
  • Resume (if one has been made)
  • Copy of social security card
  • Proof of address (preferably a bill)
  • Proof of income (pay stub, W2)

 

New York City Offices

 
BRONX DISTRICT OFFICE
Lisa Field

Senior VR Counselor, Transition
Lisa.Field@nysed.gov
(718) 931-3597
BROOKLYN DISTRICT OFFICE
Lisa Field
Senior VR Counselor, Transition
Lisa.Field@nysed.gov
(718) 931-3597
MANHATTAN DISTRICT OFFICE Kevin McMullen
Senior VR Counselor, Transition
Kevin.McMullen@nysed.gov
(212) 630-2370
QUEENS DISTRICT OFFICE
Michele Delany
Senior VR Counselor, Transition
Michele.Delany@nysed.gov
(347) 510-3112
WHITE PLAINS DISTRICT OFFICE
Debra Ehrenberg
Senior VR Counselor, Transition
Debra.Ehrenberg@nysed.gov
(845) 426-5414
GARDEN CITY DISTRICT OFFICE
Barbara Weissberg
Senior VR Counselor, Transition
Barbara.Weissberg@nysed.gov
(516) 227-6852
HAUPPAUGE DISTRICT OFFICE
Ruth DelRosario
Senior VR Counselor, Transition
Ruth.DelRosario@nysed.gov
(631) 952-6357
CATEGORY
Working and Adult Life, Support for employment