"I feel so much better and happier now!"
Rachel was unclear about her future and her career path before coming to Opportunity Junction's administrative training program. She had struggled in high school and through a few courses in community college, and she realized that a traditional learning environment was not for her.
With limited experience and skills, she started her career in the fast food industry where she worked for nearly four years. She realized that fast food wouldn't work for her anymore when she had her daughter. "It just wasn't a great work environment, and your family is not their priority. I wanted something better for myself and my new family. I was willing to start at the bottom and work up; I just didn't know where to find that starting point," shares Rachel.
Rachel was excited to learn about the OJ training program because it seemed to offer something different than she experienced in the past. "I was worried about not being able to work as many hours, but I was also eager to be part of a short-term program that would lead to a career. I was fortunate that my family was supportive and helped pay the bills while I focused on the program."
Throughout the training, Rachel worked hard to learn new skills and also gained confidence through her successes, earning both her Word and Excel Microsoft Office Specialist certifications. "The program was fast-paced, but everyone was so supportive. My class created truly authentic friendships that have lasted even though the program ended."
Through an OJ employer connection, Rachel landed her current job as a purchasing agent with Mike McCall Landscape, Inc. After three months on the job, she was offered a raise. "I would never have applied for this job without OJ. Not only did I not know what the job even meant, I didn't have the skills for a position like this before the training. And now, I love it! It's an amazing company-family owned and family oriented. My employer shares my priorities and is supportive of my growing family.
"With my new career path, I know that my daughter will have a better life. I am excited about my future, and I feel so much better and happier now. I will be debt free in a month-I've already paid off two credit cards! We are saving to buy a house and we are growing our family with my second baby due in July. Where you work definitely has an impact on everyday life, and I am now living the life I always wanted."