The executive director of The Arc of Indiana says a $20 million hotel project in Muncie will be a unique opportunity for Hoosiers with disabilities to receive job training. John Dickerson says the 125-room hotel will allow participants to work in restaurants, at the front desk and even own shops within the building. He says the state legislature will fund part of the hotel because it recognized the potential for job creation and economic growth. Dickerson discussed the project on Inside INdiana Business Television. August 6, 2013

News Release

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – “The support of the Muncie City Council to vacate High Street in downtown Muncie to allow for the construction of a hotel and hospitality training center for people with disabilities is greatly appreciated. The unanimous vote provides a tremendous step forward toward achieving what will be a truly unique facility and program,” Kim Dodson, Associate Executive Director of The Arc of Indiana said.

The Arc of Indiana, a statewide advocacy organization for the people with disabilities, has been working for several months with the City of Muncie and the Horizon Convention Center to build a 125 room hotel and hospitality training center in downtown Muncie. The Muncie City Council voted unanimously on August 5 to close High Street between Victor and Seymour streets, as well as a north-south alley between the same streets east of High, where construction of the facilities is planned.

Dodson said, “This venture will serve multiple purposes. The primary goal is to successfully train individuals with disabilities in the hospitality industry resulting in their employment. For people with disabilities, this will provide a valuable option for post-secondary education training that is greatly needed, not only in Indiana, but throughout the country. In addition to the hospitality jobs, the project will provide entrepreneurial opportunities that will allow individuals with disabilities to own a small business within the hotel. The project will also provide a resource for all businesses in Indiana in how to successfully hire and maintain employees with disabilities, and will provide a well trained workforce, ready to be employed in the hospitality industry in communities throughout the state.”

“Thanks to the support of the Muncie City Council, we can continue to move forward in creating a project that will truly be unique and will receive national attention. We look forward to continuing to work with the City of Muncie and the Horizon Convention Center to make this dream a reality,” Dodson concluded.

Source: The Arc of Indiana

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