Position and Wage

As a sweeper at the Santa Cruz Beach and Boardwalk, an amusement park located in Santa Cruz, California, Larissa relayed she is currently employed 14 hours a week — with even more hours to look forward to when the Boardwalk opens full-time this summer. For the past month since Larissa began her employment making a competitive wage, she has made her rounds of the Boardwalk — ensuring the comfort of guests by removing debris, cleaning tables, and assisting guests with directions around the Boardwalk. Larissa added: “It’s been fun to work with my co-workers and we always have a good time.”

Employment Application and Interviewing

Larissa knew she would like this job because the “Boardwalk is my favorite place!” She independently located the position while searching for job openings on the Boardwalk’s website, then completed a paper application. Further preparation included working with her Tailored Day Services (TDS) job coach to draft her resume and practice her interviewing skills. Larissa then interviewed with the hiring manager and was accepted for the position. Larissa relayed that she gained experience through her work at the Blue and Gold Mobile Home Park and Rite Aid, as well as through her “volunteer positions at my sister’s elementary school and the library.”

Soft Skills

Employers often say that soft skills are important to a successful work experience. Larissa reported that she has “a lot of soft skills.” “I am always learning new soft skills with my TDS staff. My greatest soft skill is my ability to always be a team player.”

Getting to Work

Understanding that arriving to work on time is important, Larissa receives assistance in getting to work from her family and her TDS job coach.

Doing the Job/Supports and Services

On-the-job support is provided to Larissa by her TDS job coach.


Challenges can sometimes occur at work. To address the challenges Larissa experiences with guests who are sometimes noncompliant with the rules of the Boardwalk, Larissa reaches out to her supervisor and her TDS job coach for assistance.

Long-Term Goals

Preparation and planning are often necessary to achieve long-term goals. Larissa plans to attend college to prepare — “My long term goal for my life is to work with law enforcement, because it would be fun for me and I’ve never worked there before. My long term goal for working at the Boardwalk is to become a leader for other co-workers.”