Lajarvis Smiley Lives up to His Name

In honor of August as Stevens-Johnsons Syndrome Awareness Month, Vocational Rehabilitation would like to share the success story of Lajarvis Smiley.

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Photo of Lajarvis Smiley working in the laundry service department at the Hilton St. Petersburg Bayfront.

Lajarvis Smiley works in the laundry service department at the Hilton St. Petersburg Bayfront.

The key to successful and long-term employment is maintaining a positive attitude and having an employer that cares. In this case Lajarvis is blessed with both attributes.

St. Petersburg, FL (PRWEB) August 27, 2014

Lajarvis Smiley, who has hydrocephalus and Stevens-Johnson syndrome, works hard in the laundry service department at the Hilton Bayfront in St. Petersburg, Fla. “I have water on the brain and drains from head to my abdomen,” said Lajarvis. “I also break out with blisters on my hands, so I put on gloves [while working] just to be on the safe side.”

This is his first steady job, and he does whatever he can to make sure he’s able to keep it. “Every now and then, I have to have surgery,” said Lajarvis. “If I have a flare up, I ask them ‘can I go home and get that checked out?’ And then from there, if I can stay, I let them know. I call them every day to let them know how I'm doing. They tell me not to worry about the job, but I always do.”

His job coach, Christy Brown at Placement Works, attributes his success to many factors. “The key to successful and long-term employment is maintaining a positive attitude and having an employer that cares,” said Christy. “In this case Lajarvis is blessed with both attributes.”

Lajarvis keeps an upbeat attitude in the workplace and shares it with coworkers and customers alike. “I love the customers,” said Lajarvis. “I love my coworkers. They keep a smile on my face and I keep smiles on their faces.”

Watch Lajarvis’ success story: http://youtu.be/Qcs23g9N5Gw.

About Vocational Rehabilitation
Florida’s Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) is a federal-state program committed to helping people with disabilities become part of America’s workforce. Our employer-focused website, http://www.FLJobConnections.com, allows businesses to search at no charge for employees who are ready to go to work, as well as to post available jobs. VR has 80 offices across Florida, and last year helped 6,523 Floridians with significant disabilities find or keep a job. For more information about VR and its services, call (800) 451-4327 or visit http://www.Rehabworks.org.