If you are like Heather, experiencing a recent setback in your career, we are here for you. We have been helping Central Floridians, get connected with the right training and career opportunities, for over twenty years.
Our FREE LifeWorks program is open for enrollment. The Spring 2021 classes are held virtually and in-person for twelve weeks, beginning February 23, 2021.
Click the link below to select your ideal location in Orlando and let us help you get connected, so you can pay your bills, provide for your household, and find a sense of purpose at work!
Congratulations to Sharon Wallace and Gloria Grehl, new LifeWorks graduates who were awarded Star Student designations by their class coaches.
Sharon and her coach, Beverly Hudgins, determined the best path for her would be an associate degree in nursing because she wants to someday own a facility that houses and cares for the elderly. Beverly contacted a retired RN and prior instructor at Valencia from the Black Nurses’ Association in Orlando who agreed to mentor Sharon, provide guidance in the nursing program/prerequisites and assist her with tutors (as needed). She is also postured to work as a volunteer in a Nursing facility when safety precautions permit.
In nominating Sharon, Beverly said, “This program has provided Sharon the courage and direction required to fulfill the purpose GOD placed within her; becoming a nurse will not be a job for Sharon, it is her calling.”
Gloria’s coach, Marcos Madeiros, shared, “she has made significant progress during the program and is now more confident to look and apply for new job positions. Our faith-based lessons were a strong push to her psychological health.” He praised her recorded online interviews. She also participated in class, encouraging and motivating other classmates and leading by example.
82 men and women and their mentors and families celebrated the successful completion of the intensive 12-week training program. LifeWorks has prepared them for in-demand career jobs, and they are headed on a new path in the new year!
Congratulations to the 82 LifeWorks graduates who worked hard to complete the 12-week integrated program! We celebrated their accomplishments with virtual Graduation ceremonies this week.
They came to JP with challenges to overcome as evidenced by the information that we learned about the men and women we served during 2020:
median monthly income was $1,700 and 22% came into the program making less than $20k/year
41% came in without a full-time job
30% were on government assistance
72% had no health benefits
The good news is that as a graduates of LifeWorks training, they are equipped with life skills for work and have been connected to community, education and employer partners! 45 LifeWorks participants applied to Valencia College Accelerated Skills Training Programs…45 individuals who learned about the many employment opportunities and chose to pursue skills certification.
We also celebrate the 61 passionate community leaders who volunteered to serve as coaches this Fall, giving 48 dedicated hours to each LifeWorks participant. We were so blessed to have 19 NEW VOLUNTEERS join the LifeWorks team! Thank you to all those who came out both virtually and in-person to be the hands and feet of Jesus.
Thank you for your continued support and prayers! We appreciate you and welcome your continued engagement in equipping people for life and work through Biblical principles.
Last semester was the highest enrollment in Jobs Partnership’s 20-year history of people looking to upskill their lives and find new opportunities! Heather was one of those students who fully embraced the idea of a fresh start in life and work. Through our partnership with Valencia, Heather discovered the Electronic Board Assembly program. An artist by nature with a natural ability to put pieces together, Heather jumped into this new opportunity supported by some much-needed encouragement from her mentor coach.
Facing a tough personal situation, God led Heather to a job fair where she was introduced to Jobs Partnership and not knowing what to expect, she signed up for LifeWorks training. COVID hit in March, but Jobs Partnership offered real and viable career paths forward into high demand recession proof jobs. We are proud to tell you that Heather graduated from LifeWorks training and enrolled in Valencia’s Accelerated Skills Training, graduated as Valedictorian of her class and received multiple offers of full-time employment even before she graduated!
This is a powerful story of Gods provision for Heather. She went from being stuck and overwhelmed in February to graduating the 12-week LifeWorks training in May, the 10-week Electronic Board Assembly class in September and landing a full-time offer with one of Orlando’s top employers Lockheed Martin in October. Yes, this all happened in the midst of a pandemic!
We celebrate Heather’s success and others like her as we continue to prepare people for life and work with Biblical principles.
The key to Jobs Partnership’s success over the past 20 years is our Church Partners. Many, like Washington Shores Church of Christ, believe that Jobs Partnership is missionally aligned with their core values and provides a tool for the church to serve the people of the community. Phil and Elleen Ellis who are ministerial leaders at Washington Shores Church of Christ initially agreed to observe a LifeWorks class site to learn more before potentially hosting a class at their church. Because of the need for additional coach mentors, they quickly found themselves serving as coaches. During their first semester, they learned first-hand how beneficial LifeWorks is to both the coaches and participants. They looked forward to the speakers and using the affirmations to strengthen themselves during the week.
The following semester, Washington Shores Church of Christ, with the leadership of the Ellis’, jumped in 100% to host a class at their church and bring together all the volunteers needed to run the class. They also purchased laptops for the participants to use for classes and financially supported JP’s efforts to expand LifeWorks training to serve more people struggling with work. When the pandemic hit, Washington Shores’ site leaders found themselves shifting and learning not only how to be a host site, but how to be a virtual host site. They were successful and their virtual graduation after the 12-week program was a celebration!
Because of COVID, Washington Shores Church of Christ could not host an in-person class this Fall semester, but the team of volunteers shifted once again, joining Thursday’s virtual LifeWorks class. The Ellis’ both agree that they miss in-person classes yet have fully embraced virtual learning. They shared that the participants are more transparent on a virtual platform and have pushed themselves out of their comfort zones. Asked about their greatest accomplishment as a mentor coach, Phil said his is “getting people to see they have value and building confidence,” and Elleen said, “seeing the ladies make it to the finish line.”
Why have they served for three semesters, despite all the obstacles and challenges they’ve faced? “Washington Shores is an underserved community, and the church has a responsibility to serve the people of the community.”
Jobs Partnership is grateful for the commitment and sacrificial service of power couple Phil and Elleen Ellis.
Nader Soliman Redirects His Career Through Training
Nader Soliman came to the United States three years ago along with his wife and two children. In his native country of Egypt, Nader worked as an engineer, but in the U.S., he struggled to find work that uses his natural aptitude for problem-solving and engineering.
While searching for work on OrlandoJobs.com, Nader discovered Jobs Partnership and the 12-week LifeWorks training and at the direction of his mentors, Nader was directed to the Mechatronics Certification Program at Valencia College. In addition, Jobs Partnership connected him with CareerSource who awarded him with a scholarship to cover tuition costs.
The Spring LifeWorks session saw record enrollment in short term skills training classes at Valencia College. Students, like Nader, seized the opportunity to redirect their career into an industry that is in high demand.
For Nader and the many other LifeWorks participants, Jobs Partnership is a connector. It connects him to classes and opportunities specific to the demands of the Central Florida employment market while using the skills, natural abilities, and talent.
Nader told us that he is excited about his bright future! We agree!
COVID Generates Innovation and New Partners
When COVID hit, LifeWorks classes were underway at seven sites in Orange County with plans to add two more this Fall. The impact of COVID has caused us to innovate and create new ways to deliver our mission.
This semester, we will host two virtual classes and two in-person classes. We are excited to welcome The Kingdom Church as they partner with New Life Ministries to bring a NEW class site to the Pine Hills community. We’re also happy to welcome Heart of MercyMinistries as they partner with New Life Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church. Thank you First Presbyterian Church Orlando and Lifebridge Church for supporting the Mercy Drive community.
Our Community Resource and Career fairs will shift to a virtual Showcase, currently being developed by our team. A new model has been created for LifeWorks participants to get in front of employers with employment opportunities. Business partners are invited to host JP Tours where small groups of participants can preview a job opportunity. They will learn about the organization, the culture, application process, and career growth opportunities. Businesses can then choose to offer on-the-spot interviews.
We look forward to these new changes to prepare people for life and work with Biblical principles. Together, we’re helping people bridge the opportunity and skills gap to connect to better jobs!
Fall 2019 graduate Eglin Ayson was not the ‘typical’ LifeWorks participant and that’s what inspired him to continue to participate in the JP mission. He wanted to be involved with a community of people from different ethnicities and backgrounds to help bridge the skills and opportunity gap.
As an Air Force veteran working in an industry that experiences layoffs based on contracts being won or lost, he experienced a long period of unemployment in 2019. During a meeting with CareerSource, they encouraged him to enroll in LifeWorks.
When asked how the training most impacted him, Eglin said the faith-based perspective because “it reframed how I needed to approach my job and career. Regardless of the balance of your gifting and what you’d love to do, it’s all still to the glory of God. We work to help both the companies we work for and for God’s purpose.”
He also increased his networking opportunities by tapping into LinkedIn with participants, coaches and instructors. The highlight of the class was the Mock Interviews; he received great feedback and “gems and nuggets” that he still remembers.
Eglin encouraged his son Travis to enroll in the Spring 2020 session so he could learn about potential careers through the assessment process and partnerships and be able to look at work from the “right perspective.” Travis graduated in June 2020.
Inspired by the volunteers he met and wanting to continue interacting with people from different backgrounds, Eglin became a JP Ambassador. He wants to share in the JP vision and be part of a community that values work and helping others connect to careers.
Enrollment in Accelerated Skills Training Breaks Records During COVID
The Spring LifeWorks session saw record enrollment in short term skills training classes at Valencia College. Students seized the opportunity to redirect their career into an industry that is in high demand, yes, even during a pandemic!
One of those graduates, Nader Soliman, wanted to find a new path that could use his natural aptitudes for engineering and problem solving. Nader is now enrolled in the Mechatronics program at Valencia and learning how to operate and maintain complex manufacturing machinery.
Our partners at CareerSource awarded students like Nader a scholarship for the training that has opened a gateway into a whole new life. Through the work of our dedicated CareerSource liaison Silvia Alvarez, all the students who applied for the accelerated skills training classes qualified for the special funding.
The best part of the story – through our partners at CareerSource, Valencia College and Orange Tech, our graduates have access to classes that are specific to the rising demands of the Central Florida employment market. LifeWorks graduates have a direct connection to employers with the greatest need and a link to job opportunities that were previously unattainable before entering the Jobs Partnership program.
Relationships with our partners is the foundation of success at JP. We are extremely grateful for the many committed organizations that connect our graduates to their next right steps.