Since its inception, the KRA Breaking Barriers San Diego (BBSD) program—operated through the Metro Region Career Centers for the San Diego Workforce Partnership—has already been featured in two KRA Spotlight! articles. The following uniquely inspiring vignettes of three jobseekers are representative of many KRA/BBSD customer-success stories:
When Diana, a highly qualified professor—BS in Biology, MS in Environmental Sciences, and PhD in Forest Sciences—was denied tenure, she experienced PTSD-type feelings of anxiety and distress. Despite impressive accomplishments, her fragile state-of-mind caused her to doubt her own capability to ever work again. However, Carnell Pinkney, KRA/BBSD Employment Specialist, worked diligently with Diana to ease her feelings of inadequacy, with positive reinforcement that the knowledge, skills, and abilities she offered to an employer were valuable. Over time, Diana re-gained her confidence and now works for a local business management company as an Academic Coordinator, instructing employees on the proficient use of Excel, Power Point, and Word programs.
According to Jennifer, “Qualifying for Breaking Barriers opened up a score of opportunities for me…help with my resume, interview preparation, job searches, and one-on-one assistance from Jason Navarro, my KRA Employment Specialist.” Approaching the end of a substance-abuse treatment program, Jennifer knew she needed employment that would sustain her…and her new sober lifestyle. Jason was diligent in accommodating the rest of Jennifer’s treatment schedule, and in ensuring that her job-search efforts were far less taxing than when she was job hunting on her own. Within 3 months Jennifer was working as a Shift Supervisor for a local candy store, and by requesting post-employment services, was able to continue working with Jason through a critical period of transition.
Lyndon, who is visually-impaired and assisted by a guide dog, was referred by a Department of Rehabilitation Counselor, who felt he was ready to work and knew he would benefit greatly from KRA/BBSD. With a clear career goal in mind, Carnell worked with Lyndon to search for teaching positions, and within a few weeks, secured an interview for him with a local Charter Middle School. Successfully hired as a Teacher, Lyndon expressed gratitude for Carnell’s encouragement, the professional way in which he advocated for him with the employer, and his assistance in gathering the documentation, including his teaching credentials, needed to qualify him for the position.