Albany, NY (November 18, 2010) -
From the beginning of his career things came easily for David Alperin of Brooklyn Heights, NY. After college, he worked his way up in the financial sector; receiving constant promotions and salary increases. Most recently, he worked at Citibank as a Vice President. But, when the company decided to cut his entire department due to the economy, it turned his world upside down.
David was out of a job and collecting unemployment insurance benefits. He turned to the New York State Department of Labor's One-Stop Career Center in Brooklyn for advice and help.
"When I went there, I was looking for job leads and wanted them to look over my resume. Then I started talking to the job counselor and he told me about a program that would help me go back to school," says David.
David is a real life success story from the Labor Department's National Emergency Grant program. The federally funded program created opportunities for workers laid off from the financial service industry to retrain and retool for new careers.
A job counselor at the Brooklyn One-Stop Career Center, Douglas Gallop, helped David enroll in the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) to pursue his passion of fashion and jewelry design. David took what was once his hobby and turned it into a career.
"Usually when people first come in after losing their job, they're kind of lost. They think it's only going to be 3 or 4 weeks for them to find a job. My job is not only to be realistic, but also to provide them with hope. After talking to David for two minutes, I realized that he wanted to do something completely different," said Doug.
Doug helped David fill out the proper paperwork and continuously followed his progress. After completing his one-year training program at FIT, David opened a men's clothing shop called Goose Barnacle at 91 Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn.
David's advice to job seekers in New York City: "Take what you've learned and appreciate what you've done in the past. Try not to be angry. Life throws you changes and you've got to roll with the punches. If I hadn't been laid off then, I probably would still be in finance for the rest of my life. This gave me the opportunity I was really looking for. The One-Stops have so many resources to help you."
State Labor Commissioner Colleen C. Gardner said, "Our job counselors are the best at what they do. They know about programs available at the Department of Labor and are eager to share them with job seekers. This is a great example of a job counselor helping a job seeker pursue his dream and make it reality. I congratulate David and look forward to seeing his store myself."