2010 – Derek Blauch
Derek Blauch is one of only two employees who can say he has worked for all three Vista entities – The Vista Foundation, The Vista School, and Vista Adult Services – during his tenure. Currently serving as the Community Integration Supervisor within the Employment Services Department, Derek previously held the roles of Behavior Technician, Educational Behavior Support, and Personal Care Assistant across his last seven years with Vista.
Referred by his sister, Ashley Blauch, a Middle School Special Education Teacher at Vista, Derek came to Vista with a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Messiah College and initially never envisioned himself working in the fields of education or human services. After filling direct care roles with at-risk children and youth, Derek found himself wanting to land somewhere that he could be a stronger contributor to the programming, with a focus on Applied Behavior Analysis. He had come to the right place.
What is something people might not know about your position?
“I have an opportunity to be involved in the screening process for new customers interested in attending the Community Integration Center. I get to plan out a day together and get to know them, and I have a say in helping to evaluate how they might fit into the program. Through collaboration with caregivers and other agency providers, we can make sure their strengths are a strong match for what Vista can offer.”
What sparked your interest in working for Adult Services?
“When I became a Personal Care Assistant a couple of years ago, I was able to travel across multiple buildings and see other facets of Vista. I shared the vision that when these students were leaving us after their last year in High School, there really wasn’t a lot of hope out there for them. What would their life be like after graduation? It was difficult. It didn’t feel like a celebration.”
“I like being a part of something new. I like change and flexibility. Adult Services is only in Year 2, and it’s really strengthened my idea of teamwork. We’re serving customers that typically don’t get accepted into other programs, it’s encouraging to be part of the excitement for their future.”
What have you enjoyed most about being a supervisor?
With the recent revitalization and implementation of Vista’s induction program, Derek, as a Certified Safe and Positive Approaches and Medication Administration Trainer, is serving as a teacher to incoming hires who are eager to get started with the organization.
“I really enjoy the training aspect. Being a part of the new hire training process has been a fun way to meet people and kick-start some positivity for them in their employment experience.”
“Within the Employment Department, we’ve also recently seen some internal promotions, which is exciting. Everyone is really present and communicating. It’s a great team to be a part of.”