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Success Stories

Michael Benson

Michael Benson

At 48 years old, Michael Benson was laid off from his New York auto plant job after almost 17 years of employment. He had been working in the machining industry in a variety of capacities for over 30 years, but could no longer find stable employment as a machinist. Due to this, and a variety of other personal and professional circumstances, Mr. Benson decided to pursue medical training through the TAA program. Entering training was not an easy decision for him to make, but was the one that provided the most promise for his future.

With funding available through the Unemployment Insurance program, Mr. Benson and his wife decided to re-locate to Nevada, where he enrolled in a Respiratory Therapy training program. In two years, at 50 years of age, he graduated with honors from his program and earned a license to practice Respiratory Care in Nevada. He was hired on a per diem basis by a local hospital, and is earning considerably more than he had ever earned as a manufacturing worker.

I am so very grateful for all of the help from the TAA Program!”

Kim Franklin

Kim Ffranklin

Kim Franklin was laid off from a manufacturing company in January of 2009. As a single mother of two boys, Ms. Franklin had to care for her children and pay all he household bills on her own. After being laid off, she received unemployment insurance benefits, which were significantly less than her previous wages - she knew she needed to consider a new career. Ms. Franklin was introduced to the workforce network through a Career Transition workshop held for those impacted by the layoffs, and through the TAA Program, she was able to enroll in training as a Medical Assistant training at a local community college.

Ms. Franklin graduated from the training program with on May 15 of 2011, with an overall grade point average of 3.9. She is currently employed at as a Medical Assistant at a local community health clinic.

"I would like to say thank you Workforce Network, you made it possible."

Jacqueline Elmy

Jacqueline Elmy

Jacqueline Elmy was laid off in January of 2010 from a Pennsylvania insulation production company after working there for 21 years. Throughout her time there, she performed forklift operation, warehouse, and production work. After she was laid off, she decided to pursue training as a Certified Nurse Aid, which she did through the Dislocated Worker program. However, her long term goal was to become a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN), which was paid for through the TAA program. Ms. Elmy began training at the Wilkes-Barre Career and Technical Center in March 2011 for LPN under the Trade Act 2009 and completed her course work in June 2012. She graduated with honors and received awards of excellence for perfect attendance and for professionalism in the clinical setting.

Ms. Elmy secured seasonal employment on August 23, 2012 as an LPN working at an immunization clinic, and additional employment working for a health agency that educates and conducts health fairs for local businesses. Her hourly rate at this position includes travel time and mileage.

"I am grateful to have qualified for and participated in the Trade Adjustment Assistance Program, which has allowed me to embark on a new and rewarding career!"

James Reynolds

James Reynolds

James Reynolds was 52 years old when he lost his job of 18 years as a Tube Bender at a factory in Mt. Vernon, Illinois, and was certified for Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA). Mr. Reynolds had always thought about returning to school if given the opportunity, but had been hearing impaired since childhood and wondered if this might present a problem. During his first few meetings with a career specialist at a local American Job Center, James had trouble hearing. His career specialist, Krys Fisher, referred him to the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS): Division of Rehabilitation Services to find out if he was eligible to receive assistance to purchase hearing aids. Within no time, they had him evaluated and fitted with a pair of hearing aids - all at no cost to him. When Mr. Reynolds first put the hearing aids on, he was amazed at how much he could hear.

In the fall of 2010, James began the Automotive Mechanics Technology Program at a local community college. It was a difficult time for him - not only had he returned to school after more than 30 years, but he also had to deal with the loss of his mother and put all of her affairs in order. James persevered through it all and managed to finish the semester with straight "A"s. He completed his two-year program in May of 2012 with a GPA of 4.0. James was also a member of Phi Theta Kappa, and was named Outstanding Automotive Tech Student of the year. In August of 2012, his dream was realized when he was offered the job he had always wanted - an automotive mechanic position at the Wayne County School District.

Career Specialist Krys Fisher said, "Jim was very appreciative of the assistance he received through Man-Tra-Con Corporation and the Trade program."

Timothy Dean

Timothy Dean

Timothy Dean was employed with a textile factory in Georgia for over ten years when it shut its doors, at which time he was certified for Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) benefits. However, shortly after his layoff, Mr. Dean was able to secure employment with a tire company, a company he thought he would retire from. However, after another ten years of employment, he was laid off from this firm as well, and certified for TAA again. This time, Mr. Dean was determined to take advantage of the training available through the program.

Working closely with a case manager, he enrolled in school to receive training as a Physical Therapy Assistant (PTA), an occupation in high demand in his area. Mr. Dean made it through the stringent selection process, and with hard work and dedication, was awarded an Associate of Science as a PTA in December of 2011. Timothy went on to pass his boards and was hired as a PTA, January 2012. Recently, Mr. Dean accepted a position with a nursing home located in Albany, making a substantial salary with an impressive benefits package.

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