Independent Living Skills Specialist Position

Location: Remote | Region 9 Area
Hours: Varies
Compensation:  $14.14-$15.29/hr dependent on Experience and Education
To provide services associated with the Independent Living Skills Program such as conducting interviews, intakes, assessments, providing training and follow-ups to both adults and youth with diverse disabilities within various settings including classrooms, as well as home and community so that each individual may achieve the maximum level of independence possible. Positions at this level report to and receive direction from the Independent Living Program Manager.

Develop and maintain the Independent Living Skills Program for community residents throughout SMILES service area including IL Skills Training, Peer mentoring, Information and Referral, Advocacy, and Transitional services.  

  • Implement policies and procedures which clearly define the Independent Living Skills Program and meet the Center’s criteria.
  • Assist with the development, additions, and revisions of the Independent Living Skills curricula as needed to meet the varied needs of consumers.
  • Provide effective services to consumers including assessments, skills training, advocacy,   peer mentoring, transition, and community opportunities as well as follow-up.
  • Maintain effective working relationships with other service providers i.e., Rehabilitation Services, County Human/Social Services, County Public Health, School Districts, Community Organizations, and all other consumer team members.

Provide Independent Living Skills Assessments to adults & youth with disabilities within the SMILES service area.

  • Using SMILES’ Independent Living Assessment Tool provide assessments through self-reporting, hands-on tasks, worksheets and community activities documenting all
  • Compile all data from SMILES Assessment Tools, review referring background information and generate a report identifying consumer strengths and training recommendations for independent living.
  • Provide follow-up contacts and implement recommendations with the service network.

Dependent upon SMILES’ current needs, you may be requested to obtain and maintain Support Planning Certification through the State of Minnesota to provide Support Planning Services to consumers choosing Consumer Directed Community Supports (CDCS)  as requested by the consumer:

  • Provide information about CDCS and provider options, technology and other community
  • Assist the recipient and responsible party to develop all or parts of the Community Support Plan (CSP) which includes the health and safety plan, expenditure plan, goals for habilitation, the CDCS budget including working with family and the Fiscal Support Entity (FSE) in budget development
  • Assist consumer to locate an FSE.
  • Prepare all or part of the components of the CSP
  • Assist to make whatever changes are necessary in the plan in order to obtain
  • Monitor person’s progress towards goals

Provide Independent Living Skills Training within the Transition Program to secondary students with disabilities within the school system.

  • Collaborate with Independent Living Manager, other IL Specialists and school district personnel throughout SMILES service area in the identification of students with disabilities who may benefit from independent living skills training.
  • Determine Independent Living training needs of students, prepare materials, and deliver independent living skills education to students on an individual or small group basis.
  • Complete all agency documentation for case files.
  • Assist and collaborate with other staff in updating and revising the curriculum as needed.

Promote disability awareness and the Independent Living Philosophy.

  • Publicize, promote, and market the concept of independent living throughout SMILES service delivery area SMILES service area.
  • Provide Information & Referral and presentations to consumers, family members and community organizations regarding SMILES programs & services as well as other disability issues and engage in public relations as necessary.
  • Serve on community wide committees which promote community involvement and cooperative networking regarding disability issues.
  • Maintain and expand skill and knowledge relevant to providing quality support and services. Obtain and maintain all required certifications and trainings and applies the information to support people served.


  • Attend work as scheduled.
  • Report absences within organizational policies.
  • Manage assigned work schedule, making necessary scheduling accommodations to attend required training, meet unannounced requests and changes and meet the needs of the consumers.
  • Efficiently complete responsibilities and assigned tasks in an unsupervised environment.
  • Exercise professionalism in dress and conduct as well as appropriate representation of the agency.
  • Perform job duties based on the mission, philosophy, and values of the agency.

Education and Experience

  • Preferred qualifications require a four-year degree in a human/social services field; or an associate’s degree in a human/social services field combined with a one year of experience in a disability related position. Have a valid driver’s license and insurance. Be able to clear and maintain clearance of background checks as defined by regulation and policies.

Knowledge and Abilities

  • Knowledge of human disabilities and their characteristics.
  • Knowledge of independent living skills and its facilitation.
  • Knowledge of human services programs, practices, and procedures.
  • Ability to administer independent living skills training.
  • Possess good verbal, reading, and written communication skills.
  • Possess basic math and computer skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to use sound judgment in carrying out
  • Ability to maintain effective working relationships with consumers, other service providers, and co-workers.
  • Ability to work with a diverse population of individuals with disabilities.

In compliance with the Americans with Disability Act the following represents the Physical/Environmental demands. (In all cases, reasonable accommodations will be considered.)

  • This position requires sitting, standing and walking be performed throughout the day.
  • Ability to lift, carry, push, or pull objects up to 24 pounds.
  • Simultaneous use of hands, wrists, and fingers is sometimes required.
  • Movements such as stooping, crouching, twisting, bending, reaching, handling, fingering, and feeling are sometimes required.
  • Audio, visual, and verbal functions are vital aspects to performing this position.
  • The workday is spent with some exposure to outdoor elements including dust, fumes, noise, glare, smoke and allergens within the community.

Note: This job description is subject to change at the discretion of SMILES.

Ready to Apply?

To apply please click the ‘Download Application’ button below (pdf).  Print, complete and submit the application along with your resume to:

Attention: Erica Rewitzer
By Mail: 709 S Front Street Mankato MN 56001
By e-Mail:

Download Application