Corporate Management Consulting


Disability-Inclusive Diversity

Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities

The University of Tennessee Knoxville Disability Careers Office

Customized Corporate Disability Program

Executive Summary

For employers to maintain their competitive edge during this economic downturn, it is not enough to just hire people with disabilities.  As companies are seeking information to enhance and reinforce their diversity initiatives to include disability, Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities (COSD) and the University of Tennessee Knoxville Disability Careers Office (UTK) offer a customized, comprehensive and compelling program to engage college graduates with disabilities and leverage leadership to enhance your brand in the marketplace.

Our goal is to assist select corporations across a variety of sectors to access qualified and talented candidates with disabilities, to build and maintain a sustainable talent pipeline, fortify Employee Resource Groups and leverage that internal success to yield a significant return on investment.  This unique approach is valuable for recruiters, hiring managers and other staffing professionals to help create an even more welcoming environment for prospective and current employees and reinforce your company as an "Employer of Choice."

By developing the tools to create a more highly inclusive workplace, current and prospective employees may feel more comfortable to disclose a disability and receive the productivity tools and assistance needed to allow them to succeed.  As a result, these employees are much more likely to be retained and better positioned for greater opportunities with career advancement.  Another advantage is that these employees serve as corporate internal subject-matter experts, as well as serving as ambassadors externally in the workplace, marketplace and community.


COSD and UTK are offering a comprehensive approach to strengthen and then leverage your workforce to enhance your brand with the following services:

1.  Interactive workshop(s) to be presented to employees and executives.  Presentation topics will focus on recruiting, hiring, retention and career advancement of college graduates and other professionals with disabilities, including veterans.

Participants may include executives from HR, staffing, Diversity & Inclusion, campus and other talent recruiters, managers and members of Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) representing disability and allies.  The goals of this presentation can include the following:

Overview of COSD role and the UTK Model as an example of campus-based collaboration;

Develop engagement strategies for effective interaction with individuals with the full spectrum of disabilities;

Illustrate differences between perception (influenced by the media) and reality (informed by research and real world experiences) with current data about the prevalence of psychiatric disabilities being provided, as well as a description of the most common psychiatric disability diagnoses already present in today's workforce;

Highlight barriers to employment for individuals with disabilities including lowered expectations, external and internal stigma, fear of disability disclosure, potential impact on work, productivity and team building;

Discuss how to appropriately respond to a disclsosure of a disability;

Provide examples of workplace reasonable accommodations and how best to implement them;

Design a useful and practical "tool kit" for the recruitment of college graduates, professionals and others with disabilities, including veterans; and

Facilitate interactive table discussions with disablity-focused scenarios designed to raise the comfort level and stimulate authentic dialogue that leads to stronger teamwork and results.

2.  Working lunch with ERG members to learn about the disability-related ERG's activities within your company and joint efforts with other ERGs within the company.

3.  Meet with Diversity and Talent Attraction / Campus Recruiting executives to discuss specialized recruiting strategies and identify relevant resources to build and enhance a sustainable pipeline.

For more information, pricing and scope of consulting, please contact:

Alan Muir at 865-974-7148 or email 

  • Nordstrom
  • Ernst & Young
  • AT&T
  • Bank of America
  • Merck
  • Microsoft
  • Lockheed Martin
  • Exxon Mobil