SUSIE GHARIB: Finally tonight, February’s drop in unemployment is giving hope to many Americans. One person who found work this year is Lynne Cunningham. In our ongoing series “You’re Hired” she tells us the strategies she used to help land a new job.
LYNNE CUNNINGHAM, DIR., MICHAEL BARLOW CENTER: My name is Lynne Cunningham and I’m the director of the Michael Barlow Center, which is a program of St. Leonard’s Ministries. I’m responsible for leading the job training, placement and education components. We also provide housing to men who are coming out of prison who don’t have resources and are looking to find a supportive environment.
I was out of work from the beginning of April until the first part of January of this year. So, nine months. One of the first things I did was to put together my LinkedIn page and get that up to date. Then after that I started looking at the site called npo.net. It’s mission is to work with nonprofit groups. I actually signed up for Career Transitions Centers. The thing that the Career Transitions Center helped me do was put structure to my search, which I thought was really important. I took the four classes. I got my resume together and started doing my networking.
It was through networking that I found out about the position at St. Leonard’s opening up. They posted it on npo.net. I got an early draft of the job description and so I was able to prepare myself by also doing more research on St. Leonard’s. I think the takeaway that I would offer people is to use whatever resources are out there and to stay active. Job search is also an emotional process and it’s great to be with a bunch of other people who are doing it. And it’s also great to have experienced people who can help guide you through the process. Change is going to happen to us whether or not we want it to and hopefully we take it as opposed to letting it take us.