5 Reasons to be a DSP

Staff Perspectives


Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) are the foundation at The Arc of Monroe. This week, we are celebrating them as part of National DSP Recognition Week. From supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) in residential settings, to coordinating fun recreational outings, to working on art and music projects, our DSPs have many talents. While the job comes with unique challenges, it also comes with many perks. Check out our top 5 reasons to be a DSP!

1 – Make a Difference in Someone’s Life

As a DSP, you have the opportunity to support people with IDD in almost every area of their life. You have the unique privilege of helping people in up-close and personal ways. When someone you support sets a new goal of taking public transportation independently, you’re there to support them through the process and witness their excitement when they achieve it. When someone needs help making dinner after a long day at work, you’re there to not only help cook but enjoy the conversations that happen around a dining room table. When someone wants to plan a trip out of town after you’ve helped them budget well over the course of a few months, you’re able to see the joy they experience when it finally comes to pass. The opportunities for you to make to real difference are endless.

2 – It’s Not a Desk Job.

Cubicles and office settings aren’t for everyone. Thankfully, as a DSP, there is minimal work to be done at a desk. The most important part of your job involves interacting with the people you support, which means you’ll be on the move! As a residential DSP, you work directly in peoples’ homes, and as a day habilitation DSP, you work at one of our Day Hab sites that are equipped with rooms to help people thrive in areas such as therapy, art, music, and socialization. Being a DSP at any of our 40 locations also involves traveling around the area for various outings including day trips, doctor appointments, grocery runs, and more.

3 – Flexible Shifts to Fit Your Life

Because we have various locations with different needs, there is likely a schedule that fits your life. If you need to be home during the day, we have evening and overnight shifts available in our residences. If you’d rather have your nights and evenings free, a day shift at one of our day habilitation sites might be the right fit for you. If you already work another job but want to make a difference in your community and pick up a few hours, we also offer part time and per diem work. There is truly a schedule to fit anyone’s needs.

4 – Explore Your Community

What’s better than a day trip to fun places? Getting paid to go! The people you support as a DSP will have a wide variety of interests, which will allow you to experience both new and familiar places alongside them. Part of your role as a DSP could be to help the people you support with transportation, planning, and budgeting in preparation for the outing.

5 – Opportunities for Career Advancement

We love helping our employees grow at The Arc of Monroe. With benefits such as professional development opportunities, tuition reimbursement, and leadership training, we want to partner with our DSPs to help each one thrive. Many of our staff in various leadership positions across the agency started as DSPs, so we know that there is potential to move up at The Arc and try new roles! If you’re looking for a place to start a career with advancement opportunities at every corner, The Arc of Monroe might be just the place for you.

Celebrating DSPs

Happy Direct Support Professional Recognition Week to all of our current DSPs who are making a positive impact on the people you support across Monroe County. We are incredibly thankful for your dedication, compassion, and kindness. It does not go unnoticed.

To learn more about becoming a DSP and how to join our team at The Arc of Monroe, visit www.ArcMonroe.org/DSP.