Provide adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder with vocational skills training and employment opportunities.

ICA’s Adult Services Program facilitates vocational skills training, independent living skills, transportation training and recreational and leisure activities for adults with ASD.  Our adult services program provides communication skills support, social skills training, and supportive employment services.

As a day services program, the goal is to promote a self-sufficient and satisfying life for persons who need intensive structure.  The program provides meaningful and applicable training to each individual.  ICA’s Adult Services Program creates an interactive and engaging atmosphere where learning and growth can be fostered through structured skills training and evidence based practices.

The program provides services to include intermittent supervision and access from staff members and peers as needed.   The program provides a structured setting with a daily program of vocational and social activities.   A variety of group and community activities, are integrated based upon individual, programmatic needs and choices.

An Individual Service Plan is developed at intake; it is implemented, and updated on an annual basis.  A meaningful program curriculum for individuals with Autism include: daily food production, cooking to learn activities, exercise, recreation/leisure activities and more.



Mia Stroter
Vocational Services Director
(618) 398-7500 Ext. 311
Misty White
Case Manager
(618) 398-7500 Ext. 313


ICA is an approved Supported Employment Program (SEP) provider for the Illinois Department of Human Services.  The supported employment program provides the necessary supports and services to assist individuals with developmental disabilities to work for compensation in a variety of community-integrated work environments in which persons without disabilities are also employed. The program is designed to promote regular interaction with persons without disabilities who are not paid care givers or service providers. Supported employment may be provided in individual placements or in group settings of no more than eight individuals with disabilities. Remuneration for work commensurate with the task is expected.

Priority or Target Population:

Eligible individuals who have a basic level of work skills and who require job coach services to work in an integrated environment.

Expected Outcomes:

It is expected that individuals in the Supported Employment program will need fewer supports over time that they will see their incomes rise over time, and that they will progress into full-time competitive employment. It is expected that individuals will make minimum wage or more.


Developmental Training (DT) is a program of day habilitation that focuses on the development of and enhancement of daily adaptive living skills and economic self-sufficiency. Typical activities should be functional and performed at the natural time and in the natural environment, properly sequenced, and be developmentally and age appropriate. Such activities include: fine and gross motor development, attention span development, safety, problem solving, grooming, dressing skills, toileting, eating, communications, reduction of maladaptive behavior and promotion of adaptive behavior, quantitative skills, and capacity for independent living.

Developmental Training also enhances an individual’s ability to engage in productive work activities through a focus on professional development, which includes such habilitative goals as cooperation, attendance, productive capacity, and task completion. DT is governed by 59 Ill. Admin. Code 119 (Minimum Standards for Certification of Developmental Training Programs). This program provides the opportunity to participate in productive work and to be compensated for that work in accordance with the Fair Labor Act of 1938 (29 U.S.C. 208).

Eligibility Requirements:

Individuals must be enrolled in the adult Medicaid waiver and must meet the Criteria for Participation of Individuals in Rule 119.205. (Illinois Department of Human Services)

Priority or Target Population Criteria:

Individuals who have been identified to not currently be receiving any support services from the Division or the Division of Rehabilitation Services (except vocational rehabilitation services). With this population, if requests exceed available capacity, the State will prioritize based on the support service priority populations in the DDD Waiver Manual.


ICA conducts vocational assessments for individuals requesting services.  The information we receive will be used to develop our plans for services.

The process of identifying and appraising an individual’s level of functioning in relation to vocational preparation, employment decision making and recommendation of vocational service to include program type and placement:

  • plan a course of action
  • enhance client self-knowledge and vocational decision-making abilities
  • predict realistic program/employment outcomes that result in successful client vocational preparedness.

Screening/Needs Assessment:

  • Interview with client
  • Collection of routine background information (demographics)
  • Reliance on subjective client statements ◦Vocational choice/interest
  • Self-estimates of competence
  • Reported work history
  • Functional Assessment (i.e. Personal Capacities Questionnaire)
  • Limited, if any, standardized testing (e.g. interest)


  • Additional interviews
  • Collect/analyze documentation (e.g. school records, medical records)
  • Career exploration
  • Vocational and/or adjustment counseling
  • Psychometric/standardized testing
  • Transferable skills analysis
  • Computerized job matching
  • Job analysis and/or environmental assessment
  • Assistive technology considerations

Comprehensive Vocational Evaluation

Real or simulated work is used as the focal point of the evaluation. It is a systematic observation and recording of work behavior & performance that occurs over time and uses multiple methods and techniques to validate findings. Some combinations of the following methods are used:

  • Work samples; job samples
  • Situational assessments; community-based assessment
  • Standardized Testing
  • Interview
  • Transferable skills; job matching
  • Analysis of background information
  • Career Exploration/job shadow
  • Assistive Technology considerations
  • Prescriptive recommendations


Since 1990, persons served by ICA have successfully maintained employment in a variety of restaurants, hotels, department stores, and other businesses. Based on the vocational assessment outcome for each individual participating in the program, clients who qualify for SEP will receive assistance in customized employment, job placement, on-the-job training, and job-seeking skills.  These clients are also guided through the process of identifying a preferred job, applying for the job, and then interviewing skills.

ICA may provide job supports to help community employers address the customized needs of individuals with ASD.  Individuals often succeed when the employer and ICA forge a partnership of support.  The adult with ASD may achieve long-term success when he or she can consistently meet employer expectations.

The program is committed to providing effective employment services for adults with ASD.  Job supports enable persons with ASD to achieve independence through employment, resulting in the opportunity to earn wages and work toward a higher level of independence and becoming a valued member of the community.

Some individuals receiving services are hired as part-time employees with ICA and our affiliated retail businesses; Pasta Fare and Petals Remembered.

Pasta Fare:

To the general public, Pasta Fare is a gourmet Italian restaurant that specializes in producing fresh pasta, sauces, and other delectable entrees. However, the real purpose of Pasta Fare lies in its ability to provide vocational training and employment opportunities to individuals with autism. Natural opportunities for self-care, community living, functional academics, social leisure, and behavioral skills training are present every day in any work environment. Pasta Fare specializes in capturing and utilizing those moments to address the service needs of each individual.

Petals Remembered:

Petals Remembered, an enterprise of the Illinois Center for Autism is a unique floral preservation shop. Petals Remembered was specifically designed to provide vocational training and employment opportunities for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) while serving the dried floral needs of our customers.

All arrangements are crafted by using your dried flowers in celebration of special events such as weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, the birth of a baby or to remember a loved one. We design dried floral arrangements that will last a lifetime.


Entrance Criteria:

  1. Must be at least 22 years of age and/or no longer eligible for services under IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act).
  2. Funding for services must be established.
  3. Must be able to be transported to Adult Service Site or designated job site within one hour.

Request for Services Form:

Individuals may request to receive Adult Services by completing the required Request for Services Form. Immediate service opening may not be possible at such time the form is completed and submitted accordingly.  In the event of no service openings, individual requests will be placed on the Adult Services waiting list in the order that forms are received.

Download the Form