Melissa Schroeder always provided a secure environment for her daughter, Tierra Lawrence. She received day services with The Arc Baltimore for more than a decade. And then they faced a milestone familiar to so many parents: Tierra was driven to live a fuller life by getting a job, and she spoke up for what she wanted. But Melissa wasn’t sure either of them was ready. She acknowledges she had to let go of reservations and realize Tierra is an adult who wants to work.
Last year, Tierra entered The Arc’s Career Catalyst for job training, and after just a few months, she was ready to transition to a retail setting. She interviewed at Burlington, and their manager quickly hired her. Tierra, who is 33, proudly arranges her own transportation with Mobility services.
Her job in the shoe department is three days a week from 10 am to 2 pm. She restocks, places security sensors on the shoes and cleans up. Melissa says that on the two times she dropped off Tierra, her supervisor and her co-workers told her how much they love working with her daughter. A job coach from The Arc continues to provide support as needed to ensure she and the employer remain satisfied and if any new training is required.