Thursday, July 5, 2012
It’s a tough time for those looking for a job, especially if they’ve been out of the workforce for awhile. That’s why the Tennessee Career Center is offering students age 50 and over free Mature Job Club classes starting July 10.
Space is available for 12 participants. Classes continue every Tuesday from 1:30-3 p.m. through Aug. 14.
“The purpose is to bring about a better quality of life for mature citizens of Chattanooga,” said Tennessee Career Center business services representative Erskine Oglesby, of St. Elmo. “It’s about preparing mature citizens to look for jobs. We’ve seen a lot of people gain confidence in getting back into the workforce.”
He said the program helps baby boomers re-enter the workforce after a layoff or retirement as well as those wishing to start a career in a new field. Since the program started in April 2010, 55 individuals have participated. Many now work in clerical and customer service fields.
Mature Job Club members can use resources at the Tennessee Career Center to search for jobs. Oglesby said class participants write a speech in sales pitch format to market themselves to a potential employer. The class also conducts lessons on online job application processes, interviewing skills and setting up an email account.
“We talk about employment generational diversity in the workplace,” said Oglesby. “We show them how each generation is important to having a successful workplace. We talk about networking opportunities, public speaking skills and résumé writing.”
He said the idea is to give Mature Job Club class participants the tools to find a job in any economy.
“Over the course of your lifetime, you find yourself changing careers based on experience you develop,” said Oglesby. “Even though it’s separate industries, your skills can overlap. It’s important for mature workers to know that.”
He said throughout his career, which spans health care, facilities management and nonprofits like the YMCA and Salvation Army, that giving back to the community in which he lives has been his main focus and continues to be his driving force in life.
“I want to make a difference in the lives of others and I’ve done that through a varied career,” said Oglesby. “Each experience has led me to the next experience.”
The Tennessee Career Center is located at 5600 Brainerd Road. To learn more about the center visit www.secareercenter.org. To enroll in the Mature Job Club classes, contact class instructor Sherlan Paris at 643-2334 or Erskine Oglesby at 643-2328. Those wishing to participate can also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.