Reflecting a commitment to a robust and competitive American labor force, the 2018 National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) theme is “America’s Workforce: Empowering All.” Observed each October, NDEAM celebrates the contributions of workers with disabilities and educates about the value of a workforce inclusive of their skills and talents. For specific ideas on supporting NDEAM, visit the website www.dol.gov/ndeam. Suggestions range from simple, such as putting up a poster, to comprehensive, such as implementing a disability education program. However you choose to take part, you’ll be playing an important role in fostering a more inclusive workforce, one where every person is recognized for his or her abilities—every day of every month.
Daily Focus: GRSLA Intern from RochesterWorks! & RochesterWorks! for Youth. For Summer 2018 – MARIANGELIS GONZALEZ, Senior @ Rochester City School District, School of the Arts. GRSLA: Hello, Mariangelis. Congratulations on being part of the RochesterWorks! Summer Youth Employment, Direct Placement Internship Program this summer! We are so glad to have you with us! (SYEP is a government-funded program operated by RochesterWorks! with the intent of providing meaningful summer work opportunities to youth ages 14-20 within Monroe County. For some youth, this is their first opportunity to gain real-world work experience.) Mariangelis: Thank you! GRSLA: Rochester wants to get to know you better. Could we ask a few fun questions? Mariangelis: Sure! GRSLA: How long have you been with GRSLA / summerLEAP? Mariangelis: I’ve been here three weeks now, and I’ve worked with Luis (Director) and Tiffany (Admin Support Specialist) to learn about the administrative side of how the organization operates. GRSLA: What is the best part of your internship? Mariangelis: Getting to know all the team members, experiencing community events such as National Summer Learning Day at the Central Library and the proclamations from the Rochester City School District, City of Rochester’s Mayor, Monroe County, and Senators Robach and Funke. I like visiting GRSLA’s summerLEAP program sites too. GRSLA: What was your favorite childhood toy or book? Mariangelis: Reading was my favorite activity and my favorite book was Matilda by Roald Dahl. GRSLA: What song makes you happy? Mariangelis: I enjoy church songs, in both English and Spanish. GRSLA: What do you want to be when you ‘grow up’? 🙂 Mariangelis: I want to be a doctor. The University of Rochester has offered me a scholarship and I hope to begin studies after my High School graduation. GRSLA: Who inspires you? Mariangelis: First God, because he gives me strength and guides me on my path. And my Mother, because she helps me believe in myself, and she’s positive – telling me that I can do anything. GRSLA: Thanks for our chat, Mariangelis. We are very glad you are part of the GRSLA / summerLEAP Team this summer!
RochesterWorks! and Monroe County Department of Human Services have partnered with the Young Adults Manufacturing Training Employment Program (YAMTEP) to provide another benefit to individuals involved in the Work Experience Program. In just 90 days, YAMTEP bridges basic skill gaps for entry level employment in manufacturing that many individuals receiving benefits from the Department of Human Services face. “Students are taught basic manufacturing skills, attendance, punctuality and soft skills,“ says training founder Tyrone Reaves. “This allows them to enter into the workforce and become valuable and productive employees.” If an individual is not hired by the program’s end, RochesterWorks! sponsors a job fair exclusively for those completing this program. YAMTEP partners with several community agencies and strategic partners to obtain higher success rates. To date, YAMTEP has completed three series of trainings and has successfully graduated more than 25 people from the Work Experience Program. This type of training is very practical for a population requiring marketable skills and a quick turnaround time to employment opportunities for lucrative futures.
Individuals are becoming employed through various programs at our RochesterWorks! Saint Paul office, here are some of the things being said when asked the question, how has becoming employed changed your life? Lavonia Dunbar (Assistant Teacher) The Rite Care Child Development Center: “Having a job has changed my life. It is helping a lot with my Kids because I now work with kids. Also, I now can do things with my kids as well.” Danielle Downs (Office Manager) Native American Cultural Center: “Getting employed has helped my life out a lot. It’s a big change working but the outcome is very good. I am now off Social Services!” Lonnie Watkins (Welder) Mossman Tebbs LLC. “Having a job has given me a chance to look forward to getting up and going to works instead of just sitting around or just doing Work Experience; It gets food on the table! As for the overall experience with the program I give it a 10- it has been an excellent experience. I appreciate you (the team) so much and all the help you gave me! Thank you!” Corey Kusse (Advisor) RochesterWorks! “With resume in hand and my renewed confidence from the job readiness training and despite all the anxiety and fear in the beginning, I had changed because of this program. On May 1, 2017 after interviewing I started my dream job at Rochester Works! I am able to help build confidence and help others on their way to their success. Becoming employed changed my life in millions of ways.” Gregg Walker (Racker) QoS: “Becoming employed has affected me I a good way. I enjoy being independent and having a place to go in the mornings. It’s great to be a productive member of society!”
Leslie began her relationship with RochesterWorks! by participating in the job readiness training for individuals with families. Following that she immediately participated in the Work Experience Program. “The (job readiness) program was very beneficial because it educated everyone in all topics, not just a few,” said Leslie. “RochesterWorks! covered every aspect and issue a single parent like myself could face and it really helped me see the benefit of this type of program. We discussed the importance of having good credit, having a good foundation, activities that we can do with our children as a family unit, and many job readiness topics. This helped me transition to the work experience program because I felt I had all the tools I needed to perform my hours while looking for paid employment. “ To others in similar situations, Leslie advises, “For me personally, I needed to find employment. I have the skills, I have the support, and I am the one that needs to provide the support for my family. These programs are not as bad as people think when you are required to go to them, you are guaranteed to learn many things and RochesterWorks! is a great supporter. RochesterWorks! (staff) go beyond their job titles; this entire office comes together to help and it is like you become a lean, mean, fighting machine. RochesterWorks! helped me do a complete 180-degree change in my life, not because they had to but because they wanted to. I felt the sincerity of each person I worked with; they made me feel as though they wanted to work with me, not because they had to but because they wanted to.” Leslie participated in the Work Experience Program for a month after completing the job readiness training. She worked with a RochesterWorks! Career Services Advisor and the St. Paul Placements team and is happy to say, “I am no longer on public assistance, I am very happy to be off of the system and taking care of my own family.”
Only RochesterWorks! provides a unique set of customized services to businesses and job seekers at little-to-no cost, preparing a skilled workforce and connecting them with opportunities in our region.