Michael Kaminsky earned a B.S. degree in Psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana in 1985. Soon after college, Mike began working with people with developmental disabilities in a supported employment capacity as a job coach and job developer. This experience led him to employment programs with Aunt Martha’s Youth Services helping economically disadvantaged youth and single mothers on public assistance find employment. Opportunities arose in crisis intervention work and counseling children in foster care with special needs. As he became involved with individuals and families in crisis, Mike studied Reality Therapy and Control Theory, and became certified in Reality Therapy in 1995. He also completed coursework in the graduate-level counseling program at Governors State University.
Beyond counseling, Mike was the Director of Recreation & Education programs for ten group homes and several hundred specialized foster children in Chicago and the south suburbs. In this capacity, he was actively involved in advocating for the rights of transient youth to attend school and be afforded appropriate placement in the least restrictive school setting. During his fifteen years in the child welfare field, Mike worked
for two years as a case manager for a 90-day diagnostic assessment shelter for girls, and then managing the shelter program for another year. Mike became a case manager for
Specialized and Treatment foster care children, helping to return children home to their parents when appropriate or link children with adoptive families with the special services
necessary for stable, permanent placement. It is that sense of accomplishment to help people achieve on many levels that motivates Mike to help people get through the next challenge in their lives.
Michael Kaminsky comes to LifeStyles Academy after nearly twelve years as the Director of the Illinois Life Span Project. The Illinois Life Span project is the information and referral resource for advocacy services and service providers in the State of Illinois. Illinois Life Span is a toll-free information line and website listing advocacy resources and service providers in the state for people with developmental disabilities.
Mike’s experiences in employment programs, child welfare, special education advocacy and linkage to services all contribute to fulfilling the needs of people who have finished
high school special education and are waiting for services. LifeStyles Academy will provide opportunities for people to explore their potential in careers of their choice to flourish in the community. LifeStyles Academy is the place to grow!