What matters: Lessons learned from the implementation of PROMISE model demonstration projects

Kelly Nye-Lengerman PhD, Kai Y Gunty, David R Johnson PhD, Maureen E Hawes


Background: PROMISE Model Demonstration Projects (MDPs) are on the front line of innovative, comprehensive supports for transition-aged youth and their families. Investments made through PROMISE can inform future policy and practice in youth transition, family engagement, and systems collaboration. This paper gives an overview of emerging lessons learned throughout the implementation of PROMISE MDPs.

Documents Reviewed: This paper provides a comprehensive overview of documents from key stages of project implementation, including technical assistance plans, briefing books, mid-course and annual progress reports, and comprehensive process reports. These documents were reviewed regarding five core areas around which PROMISE was developed: collaboration models, professional development, leadership, service delivery, and family engagement.

Findings: The most salient emerging themes concern service delivery, leadership, interagency collaboration, professional development, and family engagement.

Future Directions: This document review provides the foundation and directions for a further evaluation of lessons learned in PROMISE MDPs. These lessons can inform recommendations for sustainability, the use of best practices, and the integration of policies that support employment and post-secondary education for youth with disabilities and their families. It is essential that future research continues to develop a deeper and more comprehensive understanding of these emerging themes.

Suggested Citation

Nye-Lengerman, K., Gunty, A., Johnson, D. R., & Hawes, M. (2019). What matters: Lessons learned from the implementation of PROMISE model demonstration projects. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 51(2), 275–284. https://doi.org/10.3233/JVR-191045


Peer-Reviewed Article 
IOS Press