Direct Support Professionals
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How old must I be to work as a DSP?
A: 18 years or older
Q: Is training available?
A: Yes. After you are hired there are agency-required trainings along with training modules through the Community Staff Training Program. This training is part of your employment and is provided at no cost to you.
Q: Do I need related job experience to be hired as a DSP?
A: Not necessarily; however, if you have previous experience or training working with individuals with intellectual disabilities, you may earn a higher wage rate to start.
Q: What is the pay?
A: Each provider/agency is a private company with its own pay scale. The average starting wage as of October 2014 was $13.48 hour.
Q: Can I pick the type of clients I work with?
A: You can express a preference to work with a specific population such as children or the elderly, but that might limit your hours of work. If you are more flexible to work with any population, there would be more hours and opportunities available.
Q: Is this an 8 AM - 5 PM type of job?
A: Because many clients need 24-hour assistance, many DSP’s do not work only 8 am to 5 pm. There are opportunities for flexible shifts that would work well for a working parent that would like to work around schoolchildren’s schedules or a college student that would like to work around class schedules.
Q: I was in trouble when I was younger. Will this keep me from being hired?
A: This will depend on your particular situation. You can discuss this with your potential employer at the time of your application.