Released: November 30, 2020
Delaware County’s Workforce Development Board has partnered with the Delaware County Literacy Council and Delaware County Community College to offer free services to help older jobseekers return to work.
The free services can assist older residents in returning to the field they worked in or pivot to a new career. Employment Coaches offer individual support for goal setting, networking, resume writing, practice interviews, and tips for job searches during COVID-19 and the challenges and restrictions caused by the pandemic. Residents can also access peer supports, online workshops, or job training to help them find their next career.
Jobseekers over the age of 45 make up more than 40% of Delaware County’s unemployed population and face challenges to returning to work. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted many careers, people over the age of 45 remained unemployed longer than younger workers.
The Delaware County Literacy Council’s Back to Work Program and the Delaware County Community College’s GPS360 Program have recently helped numerous Delaware County residents find employment.
A few success stories:
Teresa, a 55-year-old, long-time resident of Delaware County was unemployed for many months before deciding to enroll in Delaware County Literacy Council’s Back to Work program. Teresa was connected to an Employment Coach, who helped her pivot from a 30-year career in retail to a new career in healthcare.
Jay, a 58-year-old project management and account services professional, was laid off from a senior management position last year. Despite his degree and years of work history with prestigious firms, he was facing long-term unemployment for the first time in his life and was concerned about the impact the COVID-19 pandemic might have on his job search. Jay enrolled in Delaware County Community College’s GPS 360 Program. He worked with a coach to identify his goals and challenges, assess his work habits, revise his social media and LinkedIn accounts, master virtual communication, complete the “Taking Flight DiSC Profile” and apply what he had learned about himself to completing the “Taking Fight: In the Age of COVID 19” skill-building series. Jay actively participated in the bi-weekly Zoom “Checkpoint” support group, attended PA CareerLink virtual workshops, and regularly accessed individual coaching-on-demand as he expanded his network, revised his resume, fielded job postings, interviewed virtually, responded to recruiter contacts, and evaluated offers of employment. He was able to rely on the expertise and experience of the GPS 360 Coach when deciding which offer to choose, negotiating the terms of employment, and starting work in a full–time, well-paying position that fits well with his career goals.
“We are proud to offer these great programs to help individuals return to work,” said Kate McGeever, Executive Director of the Delaware County Workforce Development Board. “We want all Delaware County residents to know we are here for them and are offering support and resources to help them find employment.”
Delaware County residents over the age of 40 who would like free assistance returning to work can contact the Delaware County Literacy Council’s Back to Work Program at 610-876-4811 or the Delaware County Community College’s GPS 360 at 610-723-1220.