ADVANCE employs about 200 people working in a variety of areas all focused on fulfilling our mission, values and vision through personalized services and supports. Direct Support Professionals (DSP’s) are the foundation to making sure people are living the life they want. This can mean going grocery shopping, going to the movies, passing medications, helping with activities of daily living as well as forming relationships with people. DSP’s are essential in providing daily life skills as well as advocating for the person.
DSP’s assist the people that we support in reaching their life goals. They may also assist with daily tasks, like cooking, eating, cleaning, getting dressed or getting to work. DSP’s help the people we support build dignity and success in their lives. ADVANCE staff develop long lasting and rewarding relationships with the people they support. The people we support all have individual goals and dreams. Some of these goals and dreams may be to gain employment in the community, take a trip to a major league baseball game, or even go to Disney World!
We also assist the people we support by helping them take part in Brookings Community events. Some events and recreational activities that people enjoy are; Softball, Arts in the Park, SDSU games, Rodeo, Theater, Crafts, STARS , Movies, Shopping, Dining Out, Concerts at the Swiftel Center and many more!
Selecting the right person to provide services to the people we support is crucial. ADVANCE recruits staff who have the necessary skills and also possess the characteristics needed to work effectively and harmoniously to provide the best of service. Because staff turnover can be hard on the people we provide support to, we encourage all applicants to view this job description to increase the understanding of what it is like to be a DSP.
There are a wide variety of positions for interested applicants to choose from. Full time staff are scheduled for 40 hours a week. There are opportunities for Day, Evening and Overnight shifts. Part time staff are less than 40 hours a week but vary a lot by position. We have shifts that range from every third weekend to Monday-Friday. We do employ a lot of college students so we understand class schedules and offer as much flexibility as possible. Some students prefer to have a set schedule; with this option we would put a staff into a shift and not change it unless requested by the staff. Other students prefer to change their shift every week; with this option staff are required to meet a monthly requirement of 50 hours in a month and 3 weekend shifts within those 50 hours. Part time staff members mainly consist of Evenings, Weekends and Overnights.
Benefits are important to anyone looking for a job. ADVANCE offers excellence benefits for both part and full time staff. Part time staff members are defined as any staff member scheduled for less than 40 hours per week. Full time staff members are defined as any staff member scheduled for 40 hours per week. Click HERE to see benefits ADVANCE offers part time staff members. Click HERE to see benefits ADVANCE offers full time employees
We believe that our DSP’s are the backbone of our agency. It is important to us that our staff members have opportunities to learn and grow in their profession. Advance has a mentoring program for all new DSP’s. Each new staff is paired with a long term DSP mentor. The mentor is there to show the new staff around, help them learn tips & techniques, provide 1:1 training and to be a friendly face to welcome them!
Advance has also developed a DSP Leadership Academy. This is a optional program for our staff members who have completed training, but are interested in growing their leadership skills. This is an 8 week series that helps staff with problem solving, communication, role modeling and leading within the Direct Support Role.
Each year a new group of DSP’s are chosen to become certified. Advance works with the National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals to credential staff who are interested in making this job into a career. The NADSP certification provides national recognition to DSP’s working in community human services. The program consists of classroom time, online courses and the development of a portfolio showing competence in selected areas.
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