The N.H. Department of Education has been awarded $500,000 in federal grant funding to help New Hampshire residents with disabilities enter the workforce.

Awarded by the federal Rehabilitation Services Administration, the funding comes to New Hampshire from grants not used by other states, according to a news release from the state education department.

“With this additional support from the federal government, New Hampshire will maintain its important infrastructure to ensure that children with disabilities have a pathway to become active members of society with jobs that provide them with self-value and purpose,” Gov. Chris Sununu said in the release.

The one-time funding will allow the state to expand and support the work of student transition specialists who provide workshops on job counseling, work readiness training, work-based learning experiences, post-secondary options and self-advocacy to students with disabilities, the release says.

The state also plans to develop transitional services specifically for people who are blind, of low vision or deaf and blind, including a summer internship program that would include paid employment opportunities.

“The [N.H. Bureau of Vocational Rehabilitation] does a tremendous job helping New Hampshire clients with disabilities as they enter the workforce,” Education Commissioner Frank Edelblut said in the release. “These funds will be targeted to improve how we deliver Pre-Employment Transition Services across New Hampshire.”

Meg McIntyre can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1404, or mmcintyre@keenesentinel.com. Follow her on Twitter at @MMcIntyreKS.