Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Counselor

Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Counselors make independent case decisions for the VR program including determination of client eligibility, development of the client service plans and authorization of VR funds for case services, and determination of VR case closure. The VR Counselor provides counseling and guidance to individuals with disabilities to assist them in achieving employment outcomes consistent with their strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice. Some VR Counselors may serve as a speciality Counselor for an area of the state, such as Speciality VR Counselor for a population with hearing loss, low vision, Traumatic Brain Injury, or others.
Essential Duties/Responsibilities:
Conduct diagnostic interview to obtain medical, psychological, educational, social, vocational, and personal information to assist people with disabilities in making appropriate career choices
Determine VR eligibility based on federal and state regulations; Eligibility determination required to be completed within 60 days
Explore career choices and counsel on choices so customer makes informed decisions
Develop written plan for employment with customer
Utilize appropriate counseling and case management methods
Arrange and monitor services with multiple providers
Explore comparable benefits
Comply with all required steps of customer appeal process
Justify expenditures in case record
Review various evaluation (medical, psychological, assistive technology, benefits, etc) results with consumers
Determine and justify if successful employment is achieved per federal regulations
Authorize client services expenditures following all federal and state agency guidelines
Ensure a case record is established for each referral and referral seen in a timely fashion
Make appropriate referrals to other agencies and community partners, including appropriate medical, psychological, and psychiatric evaluations
Contact vendors to obtain medical information and monitor responses
Complete all documentation timely and accurately
Educate customers on assigning their 'ticket' under the Ticket to Work Program
Establish and continue contact with schools (including post-secondary), hospitals, doctors, lawyers, other agencies, and other referral sources
Educate referral sources about VR and the referral process
May do public speaking to provide education about VR
May educate employers on accommodation issues
Ensure services are provided prior to payment
Determine need for post-employment services
Establish employer contacts and develop jobs in the community
Audit fiscal documents for errors

Job Requirements:
Masters degree in Rehabilitation Counseling or related area per federal regulations OR CRC - Certified Rehabilitation Counselor - accreditation (if staff have CRC, Master degree is not required.)
Vocational counseling skills
Awareness of cultural diversity, medical and psychological aspects of disability, counseling theories, assessment tools, job development and placement, Rehabilitation Act, ADA, IDEA, Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare, DFC programs, DWD programs, rehabilitation technology, economic and labor market trends, community organizations structure, software, office procedures and financial aid
Excellent oral and written communication skills, keyboarding skills, creativity, problem-solving, evaluation of services, and time management skills
Ability to communicate with diverse populations, flexibility, handling multiple tasks, maintaining professional demeanor, and ability to empathize
Ability to interpret psychological testing and medical terminology and identify individual rehabilitation technology needs
Knowledge of confidentiality protocol
Training and/or public speaking skills preferred
Knowledge of availability of alternate resources in the community preferred
Continuing training/education for Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC) maintenance
Starting salary for this position is $33,748 annually.

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