Poster with a black chalkboard background overlaid with mathematical equations. In the center of the poster, on a diagonal, is a black rectangle bordered by small teal, yellow and red rectangles. It features the 2022 NDEAM theme, “Disability: Part of the Equity Equation,” along with an equation composed of several graphics: a circular photo of a woman in a wheelchair working at a computer with colleagues, followed by a plus sign, followed by a square image of a woman who uses crutches viewing a document with a colleague, followed by an equal sign, followed by a light bulb icon. Across the top of the rectangle in small, white letters are the words National Disability Employment Awareness Month. Along the bottom in small white letters is the hashtag “NDEAM” followed by ODEP’s website address, In the lower right corner in white lettering is the DOL seal followed by the words “Office of Disability Employment Policy United States Department of Labor.”

Each October, the St. Louis Arc recognizes National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). This national campaign raises awareness about disability employment issues and celebrates the many and varied contributions of America’s workers with disabilities. The Employment Services team at the Arc support people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to achieve their employment goals.  

Meet Noah

Noah began his employment journey with the Arc in 2020. A history major, Noah graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts in History. His extensive knowledge of history and amazing skills for remembering dates, names, and facts guided his goal to find a job in the history field. While working with his Arc Career Consultant, Noah was encouraged to explore career paths through informational interviews. After meeting with many local organizations, Noah and his Career Consultant determined it would be challenging for Noah to achieve a job in the field without a master’s degree.  

Finding A New Path

As he continued to search for his dream job, his employment team encouraged him to expand his horizons. Noah took their advice to heart and applied for a job as a tour guide at Anheuser-Busch. The employment team questioned the fit, but worked with Noah to learn more about the company, the job, and where his skills would shine. The team was also building a new relationship with Anheuser-Busch and was able to discuss ways they could support Noah.  

Noah was offered an interview and worked on interview prep with the Employment Services team. They practiced situational questions and developed questions for Noah to ask the interviewer. “My interview went great,” said Noah, “and I was hired on the spot! It was one of the happiest and proudest days of my life!” 

Utilizing His Strengths

A large part of the tour guide’s role is memorizing scripts for various tours, much of which includes the history of the company, the Clydesdales, and the stables. Since beginning his role in May, he works independently, running four different tours, the largest tour for 60 people. Noah shares “they are very forgiving of mistakes and slip-ups. They walk me through new routes and I always feel welcome and respected.”

Encouraging Others

While Noah’s path was challenging, the results have been amazing. He has strong advice for others trying to find a career. “What I would tell young people disabled or able-bodied, is to do informational interviews. If you are in college, consult a career advisor. Learn all you can about your field and what the job market for that field looks like — do your research. Don’t be afraid to change course in your job search if you feel like you want to. Furthermore, NEVER EVER settle on something just so you can have a job. Take the time to find something YOU will enjoy doing.”