Creating Smiles While Making an Impact

Andrew DiPietropolo | Direct Support Professional

Andrew joined Bancroft in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Below, find out how Andrew navigated starting a new job during a global pandemic while working alongside his dedicated team to create smiles and a positive in the lives of the students in the Elementary Education Program.

 

“Every little positive outcome can make a massive difference in the student’s life but also mine.”

Q. How long have you been with Bancroft and what is your role?

A. I have been with Bancroft for a little over a year as a Paraprofessional in the Elementary Education Program.

Q. How did you hear about Bancroft?

A. My cousin, Lisa Caroll works closely with The Bancroft School as the Senior Admissions Coordinator for Bancroft. She knew how much I enjoyed being around kids and young adults, so she recommended I pursue a career with Bancroft. 

I got hired at Bancroft in 2020 right at the start of the pandemic. One week after I accepted the position, I started the new staff orientation (NSO) training. Due to the pandemic, there were some changes made to the NSO process in order to keep us all safe. For example, the desks were spread out and we did not work in groups. Despite changes, it was an extremely educational process and crucial to my role here.  

Q. How did it feel starting your job during a pandemic?

A. Starting my job during the pandemic was interesting but honestly didn’t affect my role too much. Bancroft was great in providing all of the PPE and precautions necessary to keep staff and students safe. We trusted leadership to support us, and personally, I made sure to put every effort forward to support the students to the best of my ability and provide a safe environment for everyone.

With the school being closed for a majority of the pandemic, my placement in the program changed for a bit from the elementary to the transition program. It was definitely an adjustment, but I have my co-workers to thank for helping me learn and adapt to my new placement.  

Q. How does your job at Bancroft impact your life?

A. Bancroft has opened my eyes to how people with autism go through everyday life; it has had a huge impact on me. From learning how to use sign language to communicate  with students to observing how the students have adapted their body or environment to fit them. The connections between Bancroft employees and the students is awesome to see. It shows me that everyone has a place in this world and makes me smile every day. Every little positive outcome can make a massive difference in the student’s life but also mine.

I really enjoy working with the kids and helping them achieve their goals. These goals can range from academic to gaining more independence and helping out at home or in their residential placement.  

Q. What does your job at Bancroft mean to you?

A. My job means a lot to me. It means that I can help be a part of the development of a student. I can provide a positive impact and show constant support. I also get to have fun with the students and my teammates in the process, which makes it even more rewarding!

Q. You won the DSP Rookie Award! What did that moment mean to you?

A. Winning the DSP Rookie Award was really rewarding but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the wonderful staff and teachers who made it possible for me to get nominated for this achievement. 

When you work at a place like Bancroft, the individual can not be more important than the team.

I owe a lot to my coworkers who have helped me every step of the way during my time here; teamwork is so important and having their support means a lot to me. That’s the great thing about Bancroft, we all work together to support one another and help each other achieve success.

 

Bancroft is hiring permanent full- and part-time positions in South Jersey, Greater Philadelphia and Wilmington, Delaware, to work in residential settings with children and adults.

Click here to view open positions.