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STEP-UP: Secondary Transition to Employment Program – USGS Partnership

Across the nation, USGS collaborates with school districts and other educational institutions that have work transition programs for students (mostly ages 18–22) with cognitive and other disabilities. It’s known as STEP-UP (Secondary Transition to Employment Program - USGS Partnership).

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Through STEP-UP, students have training experiences with USGS to gain valuable job skills that support their goals of seeking employment and living more independently.

The students engage in projects that involve sorting, counting, comparing, cataloging, and identifying and tagging information in various data sets from the different mission areas in USGS. Many students assist in the preservation of at-risk data by scanning paper and other analog records and adding important metadata to them. While the projects are not mission critical, the students’ contributions do benefit the USGS, the larger scientific community, and the public by making information more accessible. 



The success of STEP-UP has been highlighted by our partner Fairfax County Public Schools (VA), the Fairfax - Falls Church Community Services Board, and the Foundation for Fairfax County Public Schools, as well as these media outlets: National Public Radio (KQED and Here and Now), Deseret News, and WJLA/ABC7-TV (Washington, DC).


Related Programs

For information about other USGS student programs, visit the Youth and Education in Science pages.