- Employer Success Stories
Wayne Michigan Works Service Center client, Ron Goff, was laid off due to the decline in the economy.
Ron Goff had a background in manufacturing and was laid off because of the decline in the economy, particularly with manufacturing companies. He knew that he needed to be trained in a new occupation that would be more in-demand. He also recognized it was important to identify an appropriate career that would match his needs and interests. He believed that Information Technology would be a perfect match and began taking classes for A+ certification, MCP certification and web design.
With the skills he learned in website design, he applied for and was hired by Toledo Deli Provisions, where he sold and delivered products and provided computer networking solutions. Unfortunately, business declined at the company and Ron was laid off again. He hoped to obtain a job in the computer field and take his career in a new direction; however, he was denied IT jobs because he had no formal education. He enjoyed working with computers, and knew that if he was going to find a job doing what he loved, he would need to go back to school.
After conducting extensive research and career counseling with his Career Development Facilitator, he felt that the best program for him was CIS Data Base Specialist offered through Wayne County Community College District, which would award him with an Associate’s Degree. The Workforce Investment Act (WIA) Program provided the funding to pay for his classes at WCCCD, and he graduated in December 2011 with a 3.83 grade point average.
Ron loved working with computers so much that he looked for opportunities where he could learn new skills, even if he wasn’t a paid employee. He obtained an internship at the Michigan Works! Wayne Service Center, where he assisted the IT manager with diagnosing computer problems, installing computers and networking. He learned a lot that wasn’t taught in a classroom setting and was grateful for the opportunity.
He also volunteered at a company that repaired computers, installed software, and constructed databases. He hoped to eventually get hired by the company. Michigan Works! offered On-the-Job Training to the employer as an incentive to train and hire Ron. The outcome was a win-win for both parties. The employer was reimbursed 90% of Ron’s wages for a period of time and Ron received the hands-on training he needed to help him develop a marketable skill set. At the end of the contract, Ron was retained as a full-time employee.
Ron’s journey over the last few years has been a difficult one at times. In addition to being laid off twice and worrying about his financial situation, Ron also cared for his elderly mother and disabled brother. Collecting unemployment barely paid his bills and did nothing to satisfy his desire to utilize his talents. Michigan Works! referred him to resources to help with his mortgage. When his unemployment was at the point of being exhausted, he worried about losing his house. When his car broke down, he was worried he could not get to school and wouldn’t finish his classes. Through supportive services, we paid to have his car repaired and occasionally helped him with gas cards.
Ron now works full time with Downriver Community Conference at the Southgate Michigan Works! Service Center as a Computer Operations Specialist. He is very grateful for the thorough support he received from Michigan Works! He is now confident that with the skills he has learned, he will always be able to find employment. He told us, “It’s scary thinking about where I would be right now without the help I received from the Michigan Works! staff and the help I got from the Workforce Investment Act funding. I’ve never been happier at any other job that I’ve worked at in my whole life. You guys have changed my life and I am so grateful!” This is yet one more life, one more story that proves Michigan Works! works.