News and Events

Jan 01, 2020

Wanted: Employer Partners!

TRICO Opportunities, Inc. is looking for employers and organizations that would like to work with us to benefit those we serve. We are interested in career exploration and training opportunities such as, business tours, job shadowing, volunteer and training opportunities. We are currently looking for businesses to contract with us to provide general cleaning, packaging, production, or lawn work, which can offer training opportunities to those we serve so they may gain the skills to become competitively employed in the community.

Dec 06, 2018

CARF Certification

On December 6, 2018, TRICO received official notice that it had achieved its 9th successive accreditation through CARF International for its provision of quality Community Employment Services, specifically in the areas of Employment Supports, Job Development, Evaluation Services, and Organizational Employment Services.  CARF is an independent, nonprofit accrediting body whose mission is to promote the quality, value, and optimal outcomes of services through a consultative accreditation process that centers on enhancing the lives of the persons served. 

Founded in 1966 as the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities, and now known as CARF International, the accrediting body establishes participant-focused standards to help organizations measure and improve the quality of their programs and services.  TRICO's achievement is the highest level of accreditation that can be awarded to an organization and shows TRICO’s substantial conformance to the CARF standards. The accreditation process includes a rigorous peer review and on-site visits.  The certification is good for three years.

Sep 15, 2018

TRICO Promotes long-term satisfying employment: The Daily News article

From The Daily News, Sept. 15, 2018:

KINGSFORD — Over past 50 years TRICO Opportunities Inc. has provided vocational rehabilitation to people with barriers to employment in the community.

A key component in this is TRICO partnering with local businesses on work opportunities for job seekers with disabilities.

Over the years, TRICO’s services have evolved and changed with the landscape of vocational rehabilitation services. Current changes fall in line with a growing national movement called “Employment First,” centered on the idea that all — including individuals with disabilities — are capable of full participation in integrated, competitive employment.

Getting those with disabilities involved in work gives them a sense of purpose, connection with their community and a means to support themselves.

TRICO’s employment services revolve around job development and customized employment. These services are person-centered, meaning individuals choose the path toward the type of employment they seek and then services are built around their skills, abilities and specific needs.

Job development is an individualized process to match a job seeker with an integrated, community-based job. Through the discovery process, an employment specialist with a vocational services agency such as TRICO and the individual amass essential information through interviews with that person and family and friends, along with observing that person in the community, at home, doing job tasks or on the job.

All of this information is compiled into a tool meant to match an individual to a job that fits interests, preferences, previous work experience, skills, knowledge, available resources and needs.

As part of providing these customized employment and job development services, TRICO also offers job coaching at an employee’s business to assist with initial training for a job and to help develop relationships with other employees who may provide support in integrating a disabled individual into the workplace. All of this is meant to ensure long-term, mutually satisfying employment.

Customized jobs differ from standard jobs through what often is called “job carving,” as specific tasks and job descriptions are formed around the individual’s abilities and needs of the business.

TRICO’s future will be closely connected to successes in matching skills, interests and needs of those they work with to the needs of an employer.

TRICO actively seeks out businesses who are willing to provide employment opportunities for those they serve. To explore whether TRICO may have a candidate who fits your employment needs, contact Emily Ellis at 906-774-5718.

For more information about TRICO, contact Executive Director Christine Kruppstadt at 906-774-5718.

By Emily Ellis, TRICO Customized Employment/Job Developer. Link to The Daily News article here. 

Sep 14, 2018

“Take Your Legislator to Work” event honors Chris Hebert

This year, the Michigan Developmental Disabilities Council (MDDC) decided to recognize Chris Hebert, a former TRICO employee, as part of their “Take Your Legislator to Work” event, in a campaign that celebrates Disability Employment Awareness. The purpose of this campaign is for legislators to job shadow constituents with disabilities at their place of individualized, integrated, employment.

Through TRICO's Supported Employment Program, Chris Hebert received a job placement at the Iron Mountain McDonald's restaurant 25 years ago, and continues to work there. He was recognized by MDDC at the Iron Mountain McDonald's on Fri, Sept 14, 2018. State Senator Tom Casperson and State Representative Beau Lafave were on hand, along with McDonald's District Manager Lori Ahola and TRICO's own Pete Rossato (Daily News photo by Theresa

Proudfit.)

Michigan Development Disability Council 

Sep 13, 2018

Business After Hours co-hosted by TRICO

TRICO co-hosted (with NEPCO) Business After Hours in Crystal Falls on September 13 from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm. This event took place at the Paint River Landing located at 598 US Highway 141 in Crystal Falls. The large crowd enjoyed delicious food and a presentation of videos promoting Iron County as a great place to work, live, and play. More about TRICO and Business After Hours here: Iron County Reporter link

We took a few minutes to honor Marianne Raymond, who began working for TRICO in 2004 She became hired as a part-time employee at Aramark on Sept. 9, 2015. Congratulations, Marianne!

 

We also honored Sawyer Gossel, who started working at NEPCO as part of a TRICO team, and is now employed by NEPCO (link to the Iron County Reporter article about Sawyer here). 

Sep 13, 2018

TRICO Open House

On Thursday, September 13, TRICO Opportunities, Inc. hosted an Open House to celebrate 50 YEARS in our community providing vocational rehabilitation services to assist persons with disabilities in overcoming barriers to employment.

Attendees were treated to facility tours, refreshments, and door prizes.

Sep 04, 2018

"TRICO Worker Just What NEPCO Needs" - Iron County Reporter article about Sawyer Gossel

BY: KRIS ISAACS

Ready for another day at work, Sawyer Gossel stands outside the NEPCO plant in Caspian. Hired via TRICO Opportunities, Gossel has been a valuable, versatile employee for the company.

CASPIAN—A relationship that began just after the turn of the century between Northeastern Products Corp. (NEPCO) and TRICO Opportunities Inc. came full circle on Aug. 6 when Sawyer Gossel became an employee of NEPCO.
     NEPCO, located in Caspian, produces eco-friendly, wood fiber-based bedding and litter for veterinarians, breeders and pet owners. TRICO’s mission is “to assist persons with disabilities in maximizing their abilities and capabilities so as to become self-reliant and as self-supporting as possible.”
     After graduating from high school in 2010, Gossel’s first interaction with NEPCO was in 2013, a little under a year after he started working for TRICO.
     Gossel spent the better part of one year with another TRICO worker vacuum packing product. After that job ended, he moved on to other ventures within the program, but his relationship with NEPCO was not yet over, thanks to Robert Rafferty and Mark Stauber.
    Rafferty, TRICO’s Iron County office administrator, and Stauber, NEPCO’s vice president, met in 2001 and first joined forces in 2002, when Stauber contacted Rafferty and told him he had 3,400 bags with valves too long that needed to be cut with scissors. Rafferty sent in a crew, which finished the work in about three weeks. The relationship continued over the years, and between 2002 and 2009, 46 different TRICO employees worked at NEPCO.

Read the rest of the Iron County Reporter article here:  Iron County Reporter September 5, 2018

Aug 28, 2017

Mike Bonetti honored as part of 2017's “Take Your Legislator to Work” Event

On Monday, August 28, 2017, Michael (Mike) Bonetti was honored at Fob’s Restaurant in Crystal Falls, where he has worked for 29 years.  Mike was selected to be recognized as part of the 2017 “Take Your Legislator to Work” event, offered by the Michigan Developmental Disabilities Council (MDDC) in a campaign that celebrates Disability Employment Awareness.  In October, Mike will be recognized along with 14 other statewide honorees at a special ceremony in Lansing.  The theme of this year’s award ceremony is “Inclusion Drives Innovation”.  Mike was selected for recognition for his longstanding service as a dishwasher at Fob’s Restaurant which stemmed from his job placement there as part of TRICO’s Supported Employment Program.

In attendance: State Senator Tom Casperson (R); Vendella Collins, Executive Director, MDDC; Kathy Johnson, former Supported Employment Coordinator for TRICO Opportunities, Inc., who matched up Mike Bonetti with the job at Fob’s.

From TRICO Opportunities, Inc.: Christine Kruppstadt, Executive Director; Jim Hord, Vocational Evaluator; Pete Rossato, Production Manager and former Job Coach for Mike Bonetti; Robert Rafferty, Iron County Office Administrator.

Senator Casperson, an advocate for promoting vocational opportunities for people with disabilities, has partaken in several such events.  Last year, Senator Casperson helped Tadych’s Econo Foods longstanding employee, Ken Bal, a Dickinson County resident who was recognized as part of the 2016 “Take Your Legislator to Work” program by bagging groceries and retrieving grocery carts from the parking lot at the Iron Mountain location.  Ken, too, had gotten help in finding employment and becoming trained in his job as part of TRICO Opportunities, Inc.’s Supported Employment program in Dickinson County.

Senator Casperson donned an apron and Mike Bonetti showed him how to clean the restaurant’s dishes and pots, then the two of them worked together as a team to get them done.

Jul 06, 2017

STEP Program off to a great start!

The success of the 2016 Student Transitions to Employment Program (S.T.E.P.) pilot program prompted TRICO to expand to program to Iron County.  Sixteen students are participating in S.T.E.P. in 2017.

In this photo, 2017 Dickinson County S.T.E.P. participants had just returned to TRICO after a wonderful and informative tour at Tadych's Econo Foods.  They even sent us back with treats and flowers!

Aug 15, 2016

Former TRICO Program Participant to be Recognized in Annual “Take Your Legislator to Work” Day

Ken Bal, an employee at Tadych’s Econo Foods in Iron Mountain, has been selected by the Michigan Developmental Disability Council to give State Representative Ed McBroom and Senator Tom Casperson a rewarding experience they’ll never forget; the opportunity to go behind the scenes at Tadych’s Econo Foods and job shadow him.   The Legislators will join Ken on the job August 22nd at 3:00pm at Tadych’s Econo Foods, 1600 S. Stephenson Ave.,Iron Mountain, MI 49801.

 

Tadych’s Econo Foods, working together with TRICO Opportunities, Inc. through TRICO’s Supported Employment Program,  hired Ken back in 1990.  Ken initially worked with a job coach at Econo to help him learn his job duties, and after a successful follow-along period, has been competitively employed there since that time.  Read full article...

For more information about the “Take Your Legislator to Work” campaign or TRICO’s work to secure employment for persons with disabilities, please contact Pete Rossato at TRICO Opportunities, Inc. – (906) 774-5718.

Jan 22, 2016

TRICO Awarded 2016 ODEP Grant

In January of 2016, TRICO Opportunities was selected as 1 of only 4 organizations statewide to participate in a Technical Assistance Grant sponsored by the US Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP.) TRICO is the only participant selected from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Participation in the Grant is in conjunction with the Michigan Association of Rehabilitation Organizations’ ongoing involvement with the Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Program. Focus of the work includes Provider Transformation assistance for TRICO to business and service models optimally oriented toward community employment, and Capacity Building through the provision of Job Development and Customized Employment training.

TRICO has already completed several required components of the Grant, and is working now to finalize and implement action and strategic plans to effect the necessary transformation in service delivery. Work will continue into 2017.

Dec 01, 2015

CARF Certification

On December 1, 2015, TRICO received official notice that it had achieved its 8th successive accreditation through CARF International for its provision of quality Community Employment Services, specifically in the areas of Employment Supports, Job Development, Evaluation Services, and Organizational Employment Services.  CARF is an independent, nonprofit accrediting body whose mission is to promote the quality, value, and optimal outcomes of services through a consultative accreditation process that centers on enhancing the lives of the persons served.

 

Founded in 1966 as the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities, and now known as CARF International, the accrediting body establishes participant-focused standards to help organizations measure and improve the quality of their programs and services.  TRICO's achievement is the highest level of accreditation that can be awarded to an organization and shows TRICO’s substantial conformance to the CARF standards. The accreditation process includes a rigorous peer review and on-site visits.  The certification is good for three years.

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