BroadFutures is a training, mentoring and internship program for neurodivergent young people. Our mission is to celebrate neurodiversity by creating access, cultivating skills and revolutionizing the workplace for all. We value equity of access for neurodivergent talent as well as inclusive and accessible workplaces and work to support both our participants and our employer partners to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes.
What You will do:
Support the successful delivery of the overall program and its activities in accordance with our mission and goals.
Support fundraising and development activities and create and contribute to social media as well as marketing and communication activities.
Conduct outreach to community partners, education institutions, and potential employers.
Assist with the recruitment, assessment and selection of program candidates.
Participate as a BroadFutures ambassador at marketing and outreach events
Serve as a mentor and first line support for our participants.
Support BroadFutures participants to grow and be successful through goal setting and establishing strategies for professional success.
Ensure that the potential of each intern and the needs of each employer partner are met, resulting in mutually beneficial outcomes.
Assist with the delivery of curriculum units and facilitating peer to peer learning.
Who You Are:
Passionate about equity of access and have an interest, lived experience, or experience working with neurodivergent young people.
A Master’s candidate or recent graduate, ideally in the areas of special education, social work, counseling, psychology, or other related fields.
Experienced or interested in workforce preparation or diversity and inclusion space.
A strong team player and communicator.
A problem solver focused on solutions.
A detail oriented, organized self-starter
How you will have an Impact:
Working collaboratively to ensure that our participants reach their potential and have promising futures commensurate with their abilities and skills.
Supporting our efforts to educate and support employers to diversity their workplaces to make them more inclusive and accessible.
Being a part of our expansion efforts to bring our innovative model beyond the
Washington, DC metro area.
Where you will work and How you will be compensated:
We work a hybrid schedule and are located in Washington, DC in the heart of downtown, in a new office building with co-working space that allows for collaboration and an amicable working environment. We are near the Farragut North, Farragut West and Foggy Bottom metro stations.
We offer competitive salary, commensurate with relevant experience ($45,000- $55,000) depending on experience, level of education, and skill set.
We offer an excellent benefits package that includes four weeks paid time off and 12 paid holidays, health insurance, including dental and vision, and participation in a 403(b) plan with matching.
BroadFutures believes in the power of employment to change lives. Our entire mission is focused on creating access, opportunity and support for neurodivergent young people, as well as employers looking to diversify their workplaces.
Our innovative program combines internships with a supportive mentor/coach model and an interactive curriculum that incorporates the arts, stress reduction techniques, individualized support and peer empowerment.
Instrumental to our program is developing the right partnerships. We endeavor to create lasting connections with employers that will be fruitful for future interns as well as the employer partners themselves.
We know that workplaces are enriched when a diversity of perspectives are nurtured. Employers benefit when they look to new avenues to recruit talent. At BroadFutures we are passionately focused on ensuring that employers become aware of the significant value that neurodivergent talent brings to the workplace.
Neurodivergent people embody the concept of “thinking outside the box.” By linking employers to neurodivergent interns they may otherwise not connect with, BroadFutures is helping change the workplace and creating awareness of how disability is a part of the diversity conversation. Most importantly, we are helping employers to understand how neurodiverse talent is an asset to business. With proper training and support, our employer partners feel empowered to recruit, support and promote neurodivergent talent.
Our Employer Partners:
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), a longtime partner of BroadFutures, and one of our 2022 Champion Award Recipients (join us to celebrate their commitment to disability at our Fall, New Opportunities, New Impact Gala on 10.22 HERE) has consistently proven to be an employer dedicated to creating a more accessible workplace. IHG has hosted 12 interns since 2018!!!
When asked to reflect on her work with BroadFutures thus far, Kathryn Markey, Director of Human Resources at The Intercontinental Washington D.C. – The Wharf remarked that, “The Wharf values its partnership with BroadFutures as part of our ongoing commitment to building a diverse and inclusive workplace. The Summer 2022 BroadFutures interns made a positive impact at our hotel – not only did they show up ready to work and eager to learn, but they consistently demonstrated a strong work ethic consistent with the level of service that we portray. We look forward to continued opportunities to work more closely together.”
Another long term partner and 2020 BroadFutures Champion Award recipient, The Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS), is passionately committed to our mission and recognizes the value and talent that neurodiverse individuals bring to the workplace.
When asked to reflect on her experience with BroadFutures, Megan Zsorey, the former program manager for The CSIS Economics Program states that “[we] have had a phenomenal experience with BroadFutures. We are fortunate to be able to host such talented individuals interested in our work, and ourBroadFutures interns have contributed to our program in meaningful ways. We always receive tremendous support from the BroadFutures staff and look forward to partnering with them each time they have a candidate interested in the world of foreign policy.”
National Disability Employment Awareness Month:
Although October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month, our work on behalf of disability employment is something we are committed to every month. BroadFutures currently partners with over 60 employers and is always looking for new employer partners who are committed to working with neurodiverse talent. If interested in our employer programs, learn more about our work HERE and/or contact Carolyn Jeppsen at [email protected].
Join us for an evening on the waterfront! We invite you to attend our annual Fall Gala, Embrace Change, Celebrate Resilience. Check out the invitation below. Find more information on our event page here.
To celebrate the successes of our Drama Instructor, Raymond O. Caldwell, our Program Director, Ashley Bray, sat down with him to talk about his most recent work with Theater Alliance, City in Transition: The Quadrant Series, now streaming through May 24th. Learn more and buy tickets here!
In the interview Raymond touches on why he does what he does at BroadFutures, how that connects with his work at Theater Alliance, and his love for Washington, DC. Raymond, thank you for all the important work you are doing!
For a full transcript of the interview, see below:
Ashley: Hi everyone! My name is Ashley Bray, I am the Program Director here at BroadFutures and today we are joined by a very special, very loved, guest in the BroadFutures community, Raymond Caldwell. Hi, Raymond!
Raymond: Hi Ashley! How are you?
Ashley: I’m good! Raymond and I spend a lot of time together in program and in shared spaces with our most fabulous interns and program participants. And Raymond has been with BroadFutures for — how many years now?
Raymond: Oh my goodness, I don’t even – I’m going to tell you the truth. I don’t even know now. I feel like it’s just become a part of who I am in Washington DC, what I do. I don’t even know. I think maybe four, three years…?
Ashley: I was going to say four? I think we are about four, but I think this really speaks to how ingrained you are into our BroadFutures community, the larger DC community, and how well loved you are that we feel your presence all the time.
Raymond: I always, always say, and I say it every time I am hosting a gala, anytime I am ending programming, BroadFutures is one of my favorite things that I do in Washington DC. I love it, I love it, and I love the community.
Ashley: Well we love having you and you make such a big impact on our program and our participants. And I think for all of our community members, and everyone watching, can you share a little bit about some of the work you do with us and kind of where your focus is in kind of connecting the work you do out in the community with the work you do with us at BroadFutures?
Raymond: Yeah, of course. You know, I always imagine a space and a place where theater could be used in the practical lives of folks in the world. And you know the thing I love about the work that we are doing at BroadFutures, is we are actually making those connections, we are actually taking theater, practicing theater, games, and we are applying them to real-life situations. It’s some of my favorite work and the work that I have always been very interested in was just that: how do we actually take theater and apply it to real life. There is an entire field of theater, and I regularly reference it, Applied Theater, and this is the field that I work in. This is the work that I have done for a number of years here in Washington, DC and you know the program we have built at BroadFutures I think is really unique and special because I think we are seeing transformation in young people’s lives through the act of play, through the act of using our imaginations and building community all using theater. So yeah, that is what I do with BroadFutures and I think that connects to what I do and what I’ve done in my career and what I do here at Theater Alliance.
Ashley: I think that is right on, and I think what you said of using theater, Applied Theater, and play, as really a tool for transitions. And so many of our young people, so many of our interns, are going through that transition. Sometimes transition can be scary, new, nerve wracking, and I think what they have found and what we have found as a program is the way you not just show up and interact with our participants, but the way you really intentionally use your Applied Theater and the games and the conversations and that building of community really helps kind of ease some of the tension and some of the scariness that goes along with transitions.
Raymond: Yeah and you know I think that is really important to acknowledge and recognize because I think what many of our interns are actually learning in program is that these moments of transition, while this moment might be a major scary transition for them – they are going to constantly be experiencing these types of transitions. And so I think that the program holistically actually prepares young people to confront these moments of transition in their future. And I think that’s what’s really special and I think that when I imagine what art does, art has always occupied that space in our lives – given us, prepared us for what the future holds and that is why we have always come to the theater: to see what is currently happening and what could happen to us and to take larger lessons away from that. I think the field of Applied Theater just takes that philosophy and really roots it in lived experience.
Ashley: I love that, and I think we see it as not just a tool; for our interns who come in the program who are able to interact in this curriculum with you and with our larger team, it is not just a tool to help them remove barriers and increase access, but it is also a tool to help them tell their stories. I know telling their stories is something you and I have been focusing on in our curriculum, I know this is something you do outside in the greater DC community through your work. Can you talk about just how important that storytelling piece is on the smaller scale through the impact and the work we do but also on the larger community, city-wide scale as well?
Raymond: When I think about confidence, I actually think the center of confidence is being able to share unabashedly who you are and to move through the world confident in your own narrative. To be able to share who you are, to advocate for the things that you want, is so vital and important, and I think what has happened in the field of art and what has happened in particularly in the field of theater is that there has only been one subset of folks whose stories, whose narratives, have been validated. And that is so fundamental and important because I think our cultural institutions like theaters are supposed to be reflections of our everyday lives. As I grew up in the theater, what I started learning and realizing is that many of the stories that I was being fed were through the experiences of white people. And while the theater is an imaginative space, creates empathy, for me to see my experience through the lens of someone else, I think it is just as important for narratives of people who look like me to be put on stage. And so a lot of the work that I have done in DC from the time I arrived I was doing a lot of early education work and a lot of that education work was in middle schools, high schools, and even pre-k, empowering young Black people to tell their stories, to be confident in the stories that both were rooted in their communities and that were of their imaginations. Because I think creating and garnering that space is really important and as I moved on to teach at Howard University, same subset of ideas: how do I empower young people to be confident in the story of who they are, but also use their imaginations to imagine what the world is that they want. And then I took over Theater Alliance and it is really amazing to now have a platform where I can actually pour directly into playwrights whose stories aren’t being told and actually lift those stories up for us as Washingtonians to have conversations about.
Ashley: And I know one of the stories that you and Theater Alliance are telling right now is the beautiful film called City in Transition. Can you tell us a little bit about that, your work about it, and how important it is for us, as Washingtonians, as a community to talk about this and have these conversations?
Raymond: I keep telling folks that City in Transition: The Quadrant Series is the beginning of my love letter to Washington, DC. I came to DC probably 13 years ago now. I was only supposed to be here for six months, and before that I was living in the UK. I was not going to come back to America, but I got this fellowship – that’s what brought me to Washington, DC, that’s what started me in the education sphere here in DC and the arts education sphere. I started falling in love with the city. And I was falling in love with the city because, you know, as a child I was told – and you know Washington, DC is a really complex city, it has always been called “Chocolate City” because it has always been a predominantly Black city, and has been the epicenter of Black individual ideas, Black art, Black civil rights movements. The civil rights movements find its roots early, early on here at the turn of the century and so it’s interesting to think about DC as a generative place for storytelling, particularly for folks whose stories have not been told on our stages. City in Transition is the beginning of our exploration into this city that we call home. I have invited four playwrights to write four different plays set in each of the quadrants of Washington, DC. Because of COVID, we couldn’t produce plays in person, but I think it is so vital and important for generative artistic spaces to continue to create, even through a pandemic, because artists have always created through many pandemics even before this one. And so I pushed these playwrights and my team to actually create a film, but a film that actually exists at the intersection of both film and live performance – and what is that? So City in Transition is just that! And we get four different stories in each of the four quadrants of Washington, DC that tell very different stories but I think mixed together in the way that we present them tells a really rich and interesting story about Black people particularly in Washington, DC.
Ashley: It’s such a beautiful piece of work, City in Transition, and the story of Washington, DC’s history and those four quadrants, and I think being able to especially mix it with the times that we are in now and the work we are doing now that is long overdue and so important. So I thank you Raymond for bringing those stories, and sharing those stories with our broader BroadFutures community but also with us and BroadFutures. It is a very important reflection piece for us and we are so grateful for that and we hope that you can continue to make work and inspire and we hope that you continue to do that work with BroadFutures as well.
Raymond: Oh, of course, of course. I cannot imagine my time in DC without BroadFutures. I am just so excited to be a part of this community. Thank you, thank you for always supporting the work – my work both at BroadFutures and as we have been developing the program but also my work artistically as I have been out and about, so I appreciate y’all.
Ashley: And how can people go and view City in Transition? I think we have a special code for the BroadFutures community as well?
Raymond: If you go to theateralliance.com, you can actually click through to the link and get tickets to see City in Transition. If you enter the code, “BROADFUTURES”, you’ll get a discount. Definitely check it out and let us know what you think!
Ashley: Yes, please, please check it out! Raymond, thank you for all of your wonderful work both in and outside of the BroadFutures community. We are excited to continue these conversations. Thank you!
Raymond: Of course, thank you!
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