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Make a Difference Giving to Michigan State University
  • $4,015 RAISED OF $5,000 GOAL


  • Al and Noel Hauser $600
  • Gary Smith $200
  • Lisa Wilcox $50
  • Angel Fletcher $100
  • Julie Hance $50
  • Jennifer Foreman $25
  • Carol McDonald $25
  • Donna Svendsen $40
  • Timothy Adams $250
  • Robin Sturm $100
  • Marenia Rabi $50
  • Savanah Cary $25
  • Judith Wenzel $100
  • Ying Yuk Sung $100
  • Benjamin Darling $100
  • Marisa Fisher $100
  • Marcia Bevington $500
  • Kim Meyer $100
  • Patricia West $100
  • Stephanie Simpson $100
  • Sarah Winslow $100
  • Mario Pipitone $100
  • Cory Medlin $500
  • Timberly Medlin $100
  • Tammara Wenzel $500

What is Spartan Project SEARCH?

Spartan Project SEARCH focuses on providing total immersion in inclusive workplace settings, where students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (called interns during Project SEARCH) can work alongside coworkers and supervisors without disabilities to develop marketable employment skills. The end goal for each intern is to obtain competitive paid employment in an inclusive setting after completing the program. Spartan Project SEARCH works toward this goal by providing each intern with 3 different internship experiences to develop a diverse array of skills, as well as providing classroom instruction from a special education teacher to offer further instruction in employability and independent living skills.

COVID-19 Impact and Safety

Like all educational programs, Spartan Project SEARCH has been heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Interns attended class remotely and were unable to go to internship sites due to pandemic safety protocols. We also welcomed additional interns from the State of Michigan Project SEARCH site to join our interns at MSU, as the state capitol complex is currently shut down.

However, interns from both groups are now back on campus and are excited to be at their internship sites! Many of our internship sites have not been able to participate due to safety protocols and budget setbacks, but we have brought on multiple new sites to help ensure that the Project SEARCH interns receive the same level of immersion and instruction that they would during any other year.

Ingham Intermediate School District (IISD) and MSU have taken numerous measures to ensure the safety of our interns, program staff, and internship site staff. Interns are required to wear masks at all times while on campus, and have specific personal protective equipment (PPE) that they are required to use for various purposes during their workday. Social distancing is observed at all times, and the classroom is laid out to provide enough space for interns and staff to be safely spaced apart. A split cohort model allows interns to come to campus in small groups in order to minimize interpersonal contact, while still allowing for in-person work experience.

Your Support Can Make A Difference

The Spartan Project SEARCH team strives to make the program an engaging and worthwhile experience that will prepare the Project SEARCH interns for a successful career. Your support for Spartan Project SEARCH goes towards:

  • Purchasing extra masks and PPE to ensure intern safety at internships and in the classroom
  • Purchasing sanitizing supplies to keep the classroom and internship workspaces clean
  • Funding staff to seek out new internship sites, and to work with both old and new sites to develop plans for safe internship experiences

You can make a difference in the lives of individuals with disabilities, and help create a more inclusive campus! Donate today to support Spartan Project SEARCH and our mission to improve the lives of young adults with IDD.

About the Project SEARCH Model

Project SEARCH began at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in 1996 as an effort to help individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) gain on-the-job experience. Since its inception, Project SEARCH has expanded across the globe, with over 600 sites worldwide. The project partners with businesses that offer opportunities for individuals with IDD to learn employment skills.

Project SEARCH partnered with Michigan State University to create Spartan Project SEARCH, a year-long school-to-work transition program on MSU’s campus for young adults with IDD to gain employment skills through intensive internship experiences. The program began in 2016 as an interagency, multidisciplinary collaboration between MSU and various state and community partners, including Ingham Intermediate School District, Michigan Rehabilitation Services, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, Community Mental Health, Bureau of Services for Blind Persons, and Peckham, Inc.

Make a Gift by Mail:

University Advancement
Spartan Way
535 Chestnut Road, Room 300
East Lansing, MI 48824

*Make check payable to Michigan State University and write “Appeal 21GGDCF1SPSEARC” in the note section.


The CARES Act allows taxpayers to take a charitable deduction of up to $300 for those who take the standard deduction. As always, please consult your tax advisor/attorney for advice on your specific situation.

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