Updated: Nov 11, 2022
If you’re looking for work while enrolled in a college degree program, you may feel that most of the viable jobs for college students don’t really match your career interests or desired skill sets. Yet there is a valuable job opportunity that many students are unaware of: working as a direct support professional (DSP). Rather than providing simple caregiving services, DSPs assist individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities (IDD) to help them become more independent. The best part? You can take on this role while you’re still in college.
Here are just a few reasons to start your internet search for “DSP jobs near me”:
No formal education requirements. It can be tough for college students to find high-quality jobs, since a completed bachelor’s degree is a prerequisite for many of them. However, becoming a DSP requires only a high school diploma in most cases. If you enjoy helping people, this may be just the job for you.
Customizable schedule. Some DSPs work a full 40-hour week, but many organizations have part-time roles available. Most offer a variety of shifts, which means college students can choose one that works around their class schedule.
Valuable experience for a variety of careers. Becoming a DSP can teach you valuable skills for a surprising array of careers in social and nonprofit services, healthcare, psychology, hospitality, customer support, and teaching. Listing DSP experience on your résumé will signal to employers that you have what it takes to succeed in a variety of people-centered roles.
Periods of downtime. Although you’ll have plenty to keep you busy during your shift, some shifts (such as overnight shifts) offer periods of downtime as well. You may be able to get classwork done during these hours (assuming you're still alert and attention) —and get paid for it.
Improve Special Needs Outcomes With Progressive Lifestyles
Progressive Lifestyles, Inc. is dedicated to providing innovative support services for people with disabilities. Our mission is to provide supportive and caring residential opportunities for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities throughout Oakland County, Michigan.
A primary focus of our organization is to interact with the individuals we support through the “Culture of Gentleness” model. We seek to create a positive environment to help them feel safe and valued while maximizing praise, limiting demands, maintaining consistent structure, and reducing stress during transitions.