Barrier to Career

Allison de Cristo, Dr. Uma Millner Department of Psychology, Lesley University 34 Wendell Street, 1st Floor Cambridge, MA 02138

Meaningful employment has been found to be critical in the recovery of individuals living with serious mental health conditions. Based on presumptions of disabling experiences, the concept of careers has historically been neglected for these communities. These individuals experience a variety of barriers in their careers specifically at the intersection of social identities, vocational identities and work-related discrimination. To completely understand the complex career-related narratives of individuals with mental health conditions, we conducted three focus groups (n = 7; n=5; n=5). These groups included   adults young adults, diverse  adults (in terms of race, ethnicity, gender identity) living with serious mental health. Data gathered focused on the meaning of career and the barriers and facilitators to employment. To analyze the data, a grounded theory approach (Strauss & Corbin, 1998) was utilized which involved. An iterative process to reach consensus around central themes. The main themes that emerged were related to, vocational limitations, internalized social narratives, intersectional experiences of discrimination associated with race, class, and gender. The results indicated barriers related to stigma of mental illness, sexism, racism, and ageism. In addition, participants identified supports systems as facilitators. Finally, participants identified the importance of having a career as it builds competence and a sense of accomplishment. These results will be discussed in the context of research, analysis, and practice.  



Additional Abstract Information

Presenter: Allison De Cristo

Institution: Lesley University

Type: Poster

Subject: Psychology

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 10
Date/Time: Wed 1:30pm-2:30pm
Session Number: 6674