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Workforce Week

When Mikaela Wellington graduated high school, she was unsure of her next move in life.

“I was pretty much bouncing from place to place, trying to find a steady job, working at grocery stores, fast food places, just bouncing around trying to see where I fit in,” said 19-year-old Wellington.

That’s where workNet DuPage came into play- a career center in DuPage County that aims to match job seekers like Mikaela with employers.

“Job seekers can come in here, whether they were just laidoff from a previous job or perhaps never really had a career path so to speak, they can come in here and learn job search skills training such as how to put together a resume, or how to conduct an interview,” said Lisa Schvach, Employer Services and Marketing Manager with workNet DuPage.

And Mikaela did just that, through a special plan called the Make Your Way or MYWay program, a classroom and one on one learning course aimed at helping young adults find the right path in life by providing training and work experience.

“We just took placement tests at first, and then we got the feel of it, we tried to pick what industry we wanted to go in. At first I was indecisive, I wanted to do office admin and then I wanted to do hospitality, then I was back and forth, but it really worked out because what I do is kind of both in a way, and when I came here, we had class five days a week, three hours a day and it was really beneficial for me,” said Wellington.

“She’s been amazing throughout the entire program, coming in unsure what she wanted and now, even seeing her on an emotional basis, just very happy, more secure of knowing that the future she can be very independent and handle it on her own,” said Nina Seperghan, Youth Career Counselor at workNet DuPage.

After Mikaela’s completion of the course she was granted an internship at Embassy Suites in Lombard which has now led to a full-time job.

“A couple months ago, in October last year, I wouldn’t even see myself up here right now, just doing really well, not depending on anybody, just can be the person I want to be and not ask for anything, so it’s a really great awesome experience that I am really grateful for this program,” said Wellington.

workNet DuPage works in partnership with the workforce development division in DuPage County which is federally funded by the state and other local organizations.

Naperville News 17’s Alyssa Bochenek Reports.


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