Talent Connect Graduation

Talent Connect graduate Brendon (L) gives a thumbs-up to the audience as he receives his certificate from UCP Heartland On-Site Trainer Jeff Faust (R)

On Friday, December 8, 2017 a unique graduation ceremony took place at Lindenwood University. Families and supporters gathered in a small dining room on campus to celebrate the hard work of five UCP Heartland program participants who completed a 12-week employment training course offered through the UCP Heartland Talent Connect program.

Talent Connect is an innovative training-to-employment program designed to help people living with disabilities start and maintain careers in the hotel and hospitality industry. The program helps participants navigate barriers to employment and works with employers in the industry to connect them with dedicated, talented program participants who are industry-trained and ready for long-term, meaningful employment.

The recent graduates participated in 12 weeks of job training through Talent Connect and now hold hospitality-related positions at Lindenwod University. After graduating from training, Talent Connect participants receive ongoing support from UCP Heartland staff as they continue developing their skills on the job.


Talent Connect is a collaborative partnership program between UCP Heartland and The Center for Head Injury Services. UCP Heartland’s branch specializes in the hotel and hospital industry while The Center for Head Injury Services focuses on manufacturing and distribution industries.