KRA Customer Plans for a Beautiful Future

Jennifer Ely worked diligently to maintain employment to support herself and her daughter.  She held down many jobs over the years…cashier, housekeeper, front desk receptionist…but then, one day it happened: unemployment.  After 2 months of trying, and failing, to get another job, Ms. Ely enrolled in the Job Readiness Academy (JRA) operated by KRA’s Norfolk VIEW (Virginia Initiative for Employment not Welfare) Program. Ms. Reva McCloud, KRA Career Agent, reported, “Jennifer told me that her ‘dream’ was to work in the cosmetology field, but had no experience in that area. So, Jennifer and I established her IEP [Individualized Employment Plan], and began implementing it immediately, which included re-working her resume to highlight her strongest skill sets.  Through our JRA program, Jennifer enhanced her already-strong customer service and interpersonal skills, and combined with her innate sense of professionalism, was able to achieve her IEP employment goal within 1 month’s time!”

Ms. Ely said of her Career Agent, “Ms. McCloud is one of the best people involved in human services. She is one of the few people who has done things to make a difference in my life, and I really appreciate her. If there was an award to be given, it belongs to her all the way around.”  She went on to describe JRA as a “life changing program, if you use it to your advantage”. Ms. Ely’s dream of a career in cosmetology is now one step closer to a reality; she currently holds a full-time position as a Shop and Stylist Assistant, a job that offers her the opportunity of sponsorship, by the salon, as she works toward achieving her license. Ms. McCloud concluded, “Jennifer’s long-range career goal is to manage her own beauty salon.  I believe with solid beauty-shop experience behind her, and entrepreneurial training ahead of her, one day she will achieve that goal.  We are elated about her progress here at KRA Norfolk.”