‘Circles’ among Career Connections programs looking to lift people up


September 28, 2011
Source: 9wsyr.com

Syracuse (WSYR-TV) – Providing hope and help is part of what Career Connections is all about, along with nearly 50 workshops to help boost one’s career aspirations and self esteem.

Career Connections provides interview techniques, resume building, and helps develop job search skills for those looking to improve their career status.

The program takes place at Carousel Center all day today. Among the 50 workshops is a special program called “Circles.”

“People are stuck and would like to get out from where they are, but they need the power to do that,” said Patricia Taylor.

Circles helps people living in poverty lift themselves up, teaching them job skills, helping them with housing and childcare, and providing interview techniques and tips. Ultimately, the program’s goal is to change the mindset of those who may never have considered a career.

“That’s the biggest thing because they’ve been told or maybe it was just understated in their family that they don’t go to college, they don’t think about that, that’s not where they’re going to go, that’s ‘Not for us, it’s for them…I can’t do that, it’s out of my reach.’ So all of a sudden, when they’re in this program, they state opening their eyes and we say, ‘Now what is your goal?’ And that is the biggest thing, it’s all about them,” said Program Director Rhonda O’Connor.

O’Connor says since its beginning several years ago, Circles has helped people realize there is a way out…and a way up.

“We say to them, ‘We don’t want to change who you are, we love who you are.’ We’re just trying to give you the tools and give you the resources so that if you choose to work in our middle class society and our middle class environment, you’ll be prepared to do that,” she said.

Career Connections began at 8:30 a.m. at Carousel Center in Syracuse and will conclude at 5 p.m.