By Aida Mallard
Special to the Guardian
Published: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 at 3:08 p.m.
Are you unemployed, have been recently laid off, were notified that you will be laid off, or need additional training to find employment? If so, then you may want to consider the Workforce Investment Act Adult and Dislocated Worker program at FloridaWorks.
“We target training that will result in employment,” said Carrie Tam, chief program officer at the Institute for Workforce Innovation, a nonprofit organization that provides day-to-day operations of all programs at FloridaWorks.
Tam said the WIA Adult and Dislocated Worker program is a federally funded program administered by the state of Florida through the local Workforce Board. She said the program looks at applicants case by case to identify what they need to get them back into the job market, to secure employment at a self-sufficiency wage, to identify obstacles to employment, and to develop an employment plan to address and overcome obstacles. A person who is employed can receive services depending on how much they earn.
To apply, those interested must attend a mandatory orientation offered at 11 a.m. on Wednesdays at FloridaWorks at 4800 SW 13th St. Registration begins at 10:30 a.m.
“Just show up and dress like you’re going for an interview,” said Tam. “There may be an employer event and you can get hired immediately.”
To participat in the program, the following criteria must be met:
— Be at least 18 years of age.
— Be a U.S. citizen or authorized to work in U.S.
— Be registered for Selective Service if a male born on or after Jan 1, 1960.
— Be laid off or terminated from a position.
— Be receiving or have exhausted unemployment compensation and will unlikely return to the previous occupation.
“We look at current situations,” said Tam, adding that savings, assets, or past income are not relevant for eligibility.
Tam said services offered will include, but are not limited to, the following:
— Resume and interview skills assistance.
— Career counseling.
— Use of a copier or fax machine.
— Email access.
— Internet job search availability.
— Job referrals.
— Short-term training of 18 months or less for careers in demand, such as library technicians, licensed practical and vocational nurses, pharmacy technicians, paralegal and legal assistants, dental assistants, graphic designers, plumbers, telecommunications equipment installers and repairers.
— Support services, such as tuition, books, supplies, uniforms, transportation assistance, such as gas cards and bus passes, tools and supplies, child-care referral through the Early Learning Coalition of Alachua County, and other services.
Upon completion of the program, Tam said participants will receive follow-up services for a year and a $50 Walmart gift card.
Participants also will have career development counselors, or “career developers” to assist them.
“The career developers work with them to identify needs to get them back in the job market and be successful,” Tam said.
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