Albany, NY (November 05, 2010) -
The unemployment rate in the Utica area is 7 percent, representing nearly 10,000 unemployed Mohawk Valley residents, but Donna Fedor no longer counts herself among these numbers. A year and a half doesn’t seem like that long ago, but for Donna things changed very rapidly at that time. After returning to her home in New Mexico after a relaxing family cruise, she returned to work only to find out that her job had been eliminated. Donna would be joining the ranks of the unemployed.
“We were all middle class, making decent money and to try and find another job making that money was just not good,” says Donna of her situation at the time.
Soon, she exhausted her 401K and savings and was forced to move back to her parents’ house in Ilion, NY. Donna’s first stop was the Herkimer County One-Stop Career Center, where she was a regular visitor and took advantage of nearly every workshop and resource the Center had to offer. She also realized the need to make some adjustments along the way.
“As you grow older and you’re employed for a long time you don’t realize things change in the workforce. I had to redo my resumes and cover letters and the way I do job searches,” she says of her experience with the One-Stop.
Within a few months, she was offered multiple jobs in the Mohawk Valley, eventually settling on one at APAC Customer Services in Utica.
Kenneth Maynor, General Manager of APAC, recently spoke of the company’s experience with the Labor Department in helping them recruit good workers like Donna. “We’ve done well with the Labor Department. Because we are growing and have been in the community for so long, we’ve needed other resources to further our recruiting efforts and we’ve gotten some great response. Actually we just hired a manager through the Labor Department, it’s worked quite well and we’re looking for more.”
Donna has some advice for those in the Mohawk Valley who are still out there and still struggling. “Definitely get out, don’t be afraid to change. Even getting out and going to a One-Stop, you’re networking, meeting different people.”
For a list of One-Stop Career Center locations, go to the Labor Department's web site at: www.labor.ny.gov . One-Stops provide services such as job search and placement assistance, skills assessments, resume help, labor market information, career planning and training assistance. Job seekers can meet with job counselors to work up a career plan that fits their individual needs and skills. Like Donna, job seekers can also participate in various workshops provided at the One-Stops. These cover topics such as how to network, upgrade computer skills, interview, prepare for a job fair or craft the right resume.
“We’re thrilled that Donna came home to New York and even more thrilled that we were able to help her find a job,” said State Labor Commissioner Colleen C. Gardner. “It’s no secret that many in the Mohawk Valley have struggled during this recession, but hearing Donna’s story should give the unemployed in this region some hope. Perseverance does pay off and Donna Fedor is living proof.”