Job Center Visit Turned Dream into Reality
Submitted by: Joan Hartmann, WIA Case Manager for Forward Service Corporation
Download a printable version of Rick’s Success Story.
Rick worked for a local paper mill and was let go after many years of service to the company. He had worked all of his adult life and was anxious to find another job or receive some kind of training. Then he heard about the WIA funded employment and skills training programs available at the Northern Advantage Job Center in Rhinelander. Rick entered the Job Center building, totally unaware that he was about to embark on a sixty-six week long journey toward reaching his dream goal.
Rick registered for WIA and ARRA Comprehensive Assessment services working first through ACT’s interactive training system called KeyTrain, and then on to WorkKeys. Upon the successful completion of his WorkKeys Skills Assessments, Rick earned himself a National Career Readiness Silver Certificate. His next step was to complete the Manufacturing Skill Standards Certificate (MSSC) Production Technician Safety Certificate.
Throughout this entire process, Rick worked closely with his Forward Service Corporation WIA Case Manager, Joan Hartmann. Together they looked for local jobs and training that matched his interests and aptitudes. Rick was also referred and co-enrolled with another agency to help assist with additional resources. Being an avid motorcyclist, Rick was very interested in becoming a motorcycle mechanic. Unfortunately the two closest training
programs were in Florida and Arizona. It seemed too far away and quite simply, not feasible considering his current financial situation. Rick’s wife owned a small cleaning business so he decided to work with her temporarily.
Several months passed and then fortunately, Rick received the news that tuition for a sixty-six week Motorcycle Technician program in Arizona could be paid for using WIA funding and other resources. He immediately applied for the program, was accepted, and enrolled!
Rick moved to Arizona and his wife temporarily shut her business down and moved with him. He held part time jobs in Arizona while he attended his training program. His wife also worked to help make ends meet. Rick recently completed his classes and graduated from the Motorcycle Mechanics Institute as a Motorcycle Technician Specialist.
Soon after his graduation, Rick was offered a job at the Harley Davidson Dealership in Northern Wisconsin. WIA provided him with mileage and other supportive services to assist him on his trip back to Wisconsin. He is now working full time and happy about reaching his dream goal of working on bikes.