BankWork$ Opened Up Many Doors in Omar Almallak’s Career, Ultimately Bringing Him to His Dream Role at Dollar Bank

For Omar Almallak, immigrating to the United States from Iraq was intimidating, not only because of his lack of English but because he had no career experience. In January 2021, after working odd jobs for a year, he discovered BankWork$ at the Energy Innovation Center with Partner4Work in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

“When I first moved to the United States from Iraq in 2020, I knew very little English, and it was so hard to communicate with people. My sister and I moved to be closer to my dad, but I knew I would need to find a job quickly. I was doing odd jobs for six months when I discovered BankWork$. The program was exactly what I was looking for, and I couldn’t believe my luck,” said Omar.  

Omar studied accounting in Iraq and knew he was very skilled at math, but learning English was far more of a challenge. While enrolled in the class, he would practice English at night and take the course during the day.  

“When I started BankWork$, I was so worried about my accent; it’s quite different than how people talk in Pittsburgh,” said Omar. “However, I was surprised to see many other cultures represented in my class! We had people with many different accents and languages. My instructor, Tanya Bashor, taught me how to talk to others professionally and even invited me to meet her family for dinner to learn U.S. customs.”  

After graduating from BankWork$ in March 2021, Omar interviewed with Dollar Bank and First Commonwealth Bank and got offers from both. However, he chose Dollar Bank because it is closer to his home. Currently, he works as a Senior Operations Analyst and is preparing for his upcoming promotion to Wire Transfer Supervisor. 

Omar describes his current role as “behind the scenes.” He prefers helping customers without needing to speak face to face. “In my role, I process wire transfers and help customers on the phone. This spring, when I finish training, I will be promoted to Wire Transfer Supervisor and help lead others,” said Omar.  

Omar highly recommends BankWork$ to anyone considering applying. “My friends always ask me how I got to my job, and I tell them about this program,” said Omar. “It helped me get my job and improve my professional skills. I’m grateful for all the doors it has opened in my life. Last month, I bought my dream car with the earnings I made from Dollar Bank. None of this would have been possible without BankWork$, and I can’t recommend it enough.”  

Click here to learn more about BankWork$ at the Energy Innovation Center or to sign up for an upcoming class.

For AJ Schwerdtfeger, BankWork$ Jumpstarted a Career in Financial Services That Led Him to Bank of America

To AJ Schwerdtfeger, a career in banking always felt like a pipe dream. After helping run his father’s business in Wisconsin for years, AJ moved to Arizona in 2021 for a fresh start. Despite his desire for a career in financial services, without previous relevant experience, he struggled to find an opportunity. While working as a pool cleaner in the summer of 2021, AJ discovered BankWork$ at A New Leaf in Phoenix, Arizona. Today, AJ has been at Bank of America for over a year and enjoys helping customers every day.  

“During my time cleaning pools, I was desperate to find a career at a bank,” said AJ. “I found BankWork$ on Indeed and instantly applied. After I got accepted, my managers allowed me to adjust my pool schedule so I could take the program. They knew how much I wanted this opportunity, and I’m grateful for their support.”  

Lorraine Alvarez, Business Services Supervisor at A New Leaf, first met AJ when he applied for BankWork$. “AJ was a role model student in Instructor Cheri Foschi’s class,” said Lorraine. “I asked him why he wanted to leave the family business, and his reply was, ‘look at my hands; the pool chemicals are damaging my hands. I can’t do this anymore.’ He always arrived to class early and didn’t miss a single day, earning him the Perfect Attendance Award. He started out as a timid young man during the first week of class, but was leading group activities by week six,” said Lorraine. 

“Before starting BankWork$, I kept to myself a lot,” said AJ. “I didn’t talk to people all that much and preferred to blend into the background. Now, I talk to people on the phone daily. It’s crazy for me to remember that wasn’t always the case. Joining Cheri’s class was one of the best decisions I ever made because it jumpstarted my career in financial services. She taught me how to break out of my shell and become a more confident speaker. We still keep in touch today, and I’m grateful for her guidance and advice.”    

After graduating from BankWork$ in November 2021, AJ interviewed with multiple financial institutions in Phoenix. Soon after his graduation ceremony, he enthusiastically accepted an offer from Bank of America for a General Distributions Representative role. In November 2022, AJ was promoted to Distribution Escalations Specialist. 

His daily responsibilities include moving money between accounts, helping with paperwork, and talking with customers on the phone. “Sometimes people are frustrated or upset with their financial situations, and I enjoy helping walk them through solutions to their problems,” said AJ. “At Bank of America, we’re always trying to figure out how things could improve, and I’ve always loved helping people—so it’s a great fit. I can’t wait to continue my career here for a long time.”  

To learn more about BankWork$ at A New Leaf, click here to watch our interview with staff and previous participants.

Click here to learn more about BankWork$ at A New Leaf or to sign up for an upcoming class.

Brett Moore Has a Rewarding Career at Vectra Bank—Thanks to BankWork$ 

Brett Moore was sure that a career in financial services was right around the corner after graduating college with an economics degree. However, he struggled to get interviews due to his lack of banking experience. After searching Indeed for job opportunities, Brett discovered BankWork$ at Goodwill of Colorado in Denver, Colorado. With only a few days until classes started, Brett quickly applied. Now, five years after graduating from BankWork$, Brett is a Branch Service Manager at Vectra Bank, where he oversees tellers and helps customers daily. “Signing up for that class started my career as a whole. I have no idea where I’d be without it,” said Brett.  

When Brett started BankWork$ in October 2017, he was in Instructor Candice Sporhase-White’s class. The professional environment of the program was a new but positive experience. “When I was in college, everything was on beach time,” said Brett. “Candice’s class was much more structured; she would call people out who weren’t actively listening, which helped me pay close attention. She didn’t want us to make careless mistakes.”  

For Brett, financial skills came naturally, but professional social skills were a greater personal challenge. “Candice taught me how to interview correctly. I used to answer questions immediately without thinking of a good response, but now I’m much better. While I was initially attracted to the career potential this class provided, I’m thankful for the social skills it taught me. We did weeks of interview practices, social skill lessons, and training exercises. Without BankWork$, I don’t know how I would have sold myself to convince people to hire me,” said Brett.  

After graduating from BankWork$ in December 2017, Brett, like all BankWork$ graduates, interviewed with local financial instructions (all BankWork$ graduates are guaranteed interviews with each employer partner). Shortly after graduating, he accepted an offer from Vectra Bank for a junior teller position. “My family was thrilled to see me get hired so quickly!” said Brett. Currently, he trains new tellers and helps clients with various financial services issues. His favorite aspect of his career is feeling like part of a community where everyone wants each other to succeed.  

Kelly Hargrove, a current Manager and Banking Instructor for BankWork$ at Goodwill of Colorado, was inspired by Brett’s story and has invited him to speak at several events to offer advice to current participants. “From the first moment Brett reached out to me, he was eager to share the huge impact the program had on him and how it helped him get a career with Vectra Bank,” said Kelly. “Brett has generously come to speak to students at my classes and was also an inspiring alum speaker at a recent graduation. His story motivates others students to believe in their dreams. It makes a huge difference for them to hear a story from someone like Brett, who has been where they were and is now where they want to be!”  

Brett’s advice to anyone considering BankWork$ or CareerWork$ Medical is to figure out if it will help you reach your career goals. “The instructors will help you define your goals and figure out if it’s a good fit. There’s much to learn and gain from that class besides just banking,” said Brett. 

Click here to learn more about Brett.  

No college degree is required to attend BankWork$, to learn more about specific-program requirements, click here. 

Click here to learn more about BankWork$, our partnership with Goodwill of Colorado, or to sign up for an upcoming class. 

Jatia Hall Found Success in a New Industry Thanks to BankWork$

After working as a pharmacy technician for six years, Jatia Hall wanted to pursue a new opportunity. She learned about BankWork$ at Philadelphia OIC and was extremely interested upon learning that all graduates get interviews with companies hiring immediately. With no prior experience in banking, she knew pursuing an entirely different career would be challenging, but applied for the program and has never looked back.    

“At that point in my career, my only background was in medical customer service,” said Jatia. “I knew that good customer service skills could transfer into the financial services industry, but I didn’t know anything about banking itself. I also knew that finding a new pharmaceutical role would be easier, but I wanted to try something different and exciting.”     

Jatia attended Shantelle Faison’s BanKWork$ class at Philadelphia OIC. “Shantelle taught me how to be as professional as possible in the workplace. I would have never thought about standing up to shake hands if she hadn’t shown me. She also taught me to dress for the position I want, not where I currently am. I still use her teachings daily, and I’m grateful to have her as part of my support system,” Jatia said.    

After graduating from BankWork$ in May 2019, Jatia interviewed with multiple financial institutions at the hiring fair that immediately follows any BankWork$ or CareerWork$ Medical graduation ceremony. “On graduation day, I loved how you’re able to connect with recruiters from all types of places,” said Jatia. Shortly after graduating, she enthusiastically accepted an offer for a teller role at TD Bank.

After two years at TD Bank, in 2021 Jatia was promoted to her current role of Customer Experience Coordinator, thanks to her consistently excellent customer feedback. She provides customer services, including opening accounts, teller operations, building bank relationships, and mentoring new tellers. She feels appreciated on her team. “I can help things run smoothly on busy days,” said Jatia. “I love helping people, and when customers appreciate my service, it warms my heart. It’s the most rewarding feeling.”    

Jatia is enjoying her career at TD Bank and making a difference in her community. As she looks ahead, she wants to go into either a Finacial Advisor or Financial Service Representative role.     

“When I was in BankWork$, I had such a great introduction to this industry. Shantelle continues to be a resource and friend, and everyone at Philadelphia OIC wanted me to succeed. My advice for anyone considering BankWork$ is to never limit yourself and stay vigilant. I knew nothing about banking before applying, and now I oversee tellers every day. If you have the drive to succeed, you have all the opportunities you could need.”  

Click here to learn more about BankWork$, our partnership with Philadelphia OIC, or to sign up for an upcoming class.  

Thanks to BankWork$, Andrew Wilson’s Career at Columbia Bank Has Continued to Thrive for Over Five Years

After graduating high school in 2017, Andrew Wilson—like so many—knew he needed to work but wasn’t sure what he wanted to do professionally. A friend had recently graduated from BankWork$ at YWCA Seattle | King | Snohomish and, after seeing Andrew’s discouragement following multiple rejections for lack of experience, pushed Andrew to consider BankWork$.  

Andrew was primarily drawn to the general career preparation that BankWork$ provides. “When I started BankWork$, I didn’t know what to expect,” says Andrew. “My instructor helped me learn to be detail-oriented and focused. She understood that I needed to learn the basics of banking, and we started there. One day in class, we did an exercise where we pretended to be tellers. While I was doing a transaction, my fellow teller got robbed—nobody noticed. It helped me learn to be aware of many different things around me.”  

Mercedes Rippel, Andrew’s BankWork$ Instructor, continued to stay in contact with him after graduation and still offers her support today. “When I first met Andrew, he was timid and unsure of himself,” says Mercedes. “Once I interviewed him, I knew he would make an excellent Banker! Here we are today, and I could not be prouder of his success!”  

Upon graduating from BankWork$, Andrew, like all graduates, attended a hiring fair where he interviewed with local financial institutions. He accepted an offer as a Backup Teller at Columbia Bank. Through diligent work and excellent customer service, he was promoted to a Full-Time Teller within a year.   

Now, five years after graduating from BankWork$, he has been promoted to Exceptions Officer; he helps customers check for corrections daily and ensures deposits go to their correct accounts. He loves advancing his career at Columbia Bank. 

“My family has always supported me and knew I would find a successful career. I have that now at Columbia Bank. I enjoy my role and want to stay with Columbia for a long time,” said Andrew.

“Before BankWork$, I had trouble finding any job. I didn’t know how to present myself, and I had terrible confidence, but the program taught me the fundamental skillset of banking and changed my mindset around my self-worth. Many of us in the class were in tough spots, but we all had a supportive mentality. It was an extremely welcoming and encouraging environment. Had I not stuck around, I’d be completely different.”   

Columbia Bank is a proud employer partner in Seattle, South Puget Sound, and Portland with our partners YWCA Seattle | King | Snohomish, Career Path Services, and SE Works respectively, with a robust history of hiring BankWork$ grads. Like Andrew, graduates across the country continue to thrive in new careers thanks to BankWork$.  

Click here to learn more about BankWork$ and our partnership with YWCA Seattle | King | Snohomish.

Gabriela Martinez Found Success in a New Industry, Thanks to BankWork$

When Gabriela Martinez first learned about BankWork$ at A New Leaf from her cousin, who was a BankWork$ graduate, she was working as a waitress in Phoenix, Arizona. “As a waitress, I was trying to help my mom with bills, but it wasn’t enough, so I knew I needed a career change,” said Gabriela. She wanted a more stable career to support her family and more fulfillment for herself.    

Although her cousin assured her that BankWork$ would help her succeed in financial services, Gabriela was still nervous about beginning class and credits her instructor for helping her feel prepared. With only slight familiarity with cash handling from the food service industry, having a program like BankWork$ in which she learned about both the industry and possible roles helped her understand her professional options and find a path that felt right. “I had no idea what working as a teller would entail, but my instructors taught me so much about the role, and the more I learned, the more I realized it’s what I wanted to do.” 

Gabriela feels immense gratitude towards Cheri Foschi and Lorraine Alvarez, BankWork$ staff at A New Leaf, for their encouragement and guidance. “They changed my life forever, but more importantly, they helped me not to think of myself as someone who didn’t deserve respect. I was very insecure as a waitress, and they helped me push through that,” said Gabriela.  

“When I did my first mock interview, I felt blindsided by the questions, but the more my instructors coached me, the more I felt confident in my answers. On the day of my actual interview, I was incredibly sure of my responses and felt like I did a great job,” said Gabriela. 

Cheri remembers Gabriela as a star student in her class. “She had perfect attendance and has always been goal oriented,” said Cheri. “With a focus on assisting others, she is a natural leader and leads with integrity and sincerity.” 

Wells Fargo, a long-time supporter of the BankWork$ program, was hiring tellers for a branch close to Gabriela’s home.  After graduating from BankWork$ in September 2021, Gabriela, like all BankWork$ or CareerWork$ Medical graduates, attended a hiring fair with local financial institutions and connected with the Wells Fargo hiring team. 

“When I learned how close the Wells Fargo position was to my house, I wanted it so much,” said Gabriela. “A day after my interview with them, they gave me a call and offered me a position. I ecstatically accepted! Now, my coworkers are like one big family to me, and I can’t believe I get to work with them every day.” In her role as a teller at Wells Fargo, she enjoys assisting her customers and providing a positive experience to anyone in her branch. 

Gabriela feels thankful for the people in her life who encouraged her to reach for a financial services career with stability and opportunity, including her mother, who has always been her biggest inspiration. “My mother works harder than anyone I know and has given me many opportunities; I want to do my part to give back to her. She gives me the energy to keep going every day.” 

Gabriela encourages anyone considering getting into the financial services industry to try BankWork$. “When I was a waitress, I never thought I’d have the kind of career that I do now. I’m much more financially stable, I don’t have to deal with long commutes, and I can give back to my family. No matter your background, with BankWork$, you can find a way to succeed.” 

Click here to learn more about BankWork$ and our partnership with A New Leaf.  

BankWork$ Laid a Foundation for Renease Little to Build Up Her Dream Career 

Renease Little, a Chicago native, always knew she wanted to work in the financial services sector, but didn’t know how to get started. After an eventful few years—a health scare that meant she had to leave her job, having a second child, and navigating the COVID-19 pandemic—she was ready for a career that could support her growing family. At the beginning of 2022, her New Year’s resolution was simple: try something new. After seeing a Facebook ad for BankWork$ at Association House of Chicago, Renease knew she had found an opportunity to move forward and revitalize her career. 

“I wanted to work in financial services, but I could never get an interview because of my lack of knowledge about cash handling,” said Renease. “September 2021 was when all my unemployment funds ended, and I was back to living at home with my mom and kids. I felt so lost. When I saw an ad for BankWork$, I thought that it might be able to help me finally launch my dream career in financial services.”  

Renease remembers beginning class as a new experience in professionalism. “At first, I was surprised I had to dress up for class. I had never done that for any role before, but I knew this would lead to a career to support my family so I went along with it. Slowly, I began to understand the culture of banks and the importance of being professional in class made more sense. I needed that character development,” notes Renease. “BankWork$ laid a foundation for me to start building myself back up again.”   

One of Renease’s biggest challenges in class was overcoming her nervousness. “My instructor never made me feel like I was asking a dumb question. She also taught me to slow down when I’m talking. I felt like she really cared about me as an individual and wanted to help me turn into a better version of myself.”  

BankWork$ instructors are used to supporting participants who are balancing the program with the realities and challenges of life, and who need support and encouragement to graduate. When Renease ran into a few hurdles while enrolled, Sherri Richardson, Renease’s instructor at Association House of Chicago, was ready to help her.  

“Only a few people knew I was doing the program. I kept it very quiet,” said Renease. “They knew I was chasing after a better life. I had support from my instructor, but my personal life kept blowing up. I’m so glad Sherri encouraged me to finish strong in the last couple of weeks. I want to thank her for seeing something in me that I didn’t see in myself. It felt great to have someone who can see your possibility and wants to push you to go there.” 

Sherri Richardson speaks highly of Renease as a participant. “She was a great fit for the BankWork$ program,” said Sherri. “She always showed up to class with a positive attitude, ready to learn and participate, and support her classmates. She gave her best and put into action the tips and advice shared by her instructors and guest bankers. Renease’s desire to succeed and her willingness to work are two important traits that contributed to her success. Though she started her banking career a short time ago, she has already begun to give back to the program by sharing tips and experiences with other participants.” 

Upon graduating from BankWork$, Renease, like all BankWork$ or CareerWork$ Medical graduates, interviewed with local institutions looking to hire right away. “I had a friend who worked at JPMorgan Chase & Co., and she encouraged me to apply, although I had several other great interviews from the hiring fair, I ecstatically accepted their offer!” said Renease. 

Renease has been a Client Service Analyst at JPMorgan Chase & Co. since June 2022 and has recently moved into a new home with her family. “Waking up and being in my new place gives me joy, it makes me want to go forward and push through the day. My kids are my ultimate joy, they get me through the rough parts of life. There are so many things I’m happy for now.” 

When thinking about the most rewarding part of her new job, Renease’s answer is simple: freedom.  

“I’ve never had a job that made me feel equal. I already feel appreciated, I already feel like I’m needed and wanted there. It’s a great feeling to feel like you matter. So many jobs can make you feel replaceable, but it doesn’t feel like that here,” said Renease.  

Looking forward, Renease is excited to continue her new role and develop her skills within the financial services industry. She encourages anyone considering BankWork$ to give it a shot. “My New Year’s resolution got me to try the program, so what do you have to lose? Why miss out on an opportunity that could change your life? We all get scared sometimes, but you don’t know where you’re going to go unless you try. If you want it bad enough, and if you’re hungry for an opportunity like I was, BankWork$ can change your life.” 

To learn more about BankWork$ and our partnership with Association House of Chicago, click here.  

Because of BankWork$, Divya Singh Kushwah Began a Career In Financial Services That Has Led Her to Bank of America.

After immigrating to the United States from India, Divya Singh Kushwah got a job in the US working in human resources, but her goal was always greater stability and a consistent schedule. In January 2021, after hearing about BankWork$ at A New Leaf in Phoenix, Arizona from friends, Divya decided to make a career change and start a new path for her family.  

“When I joined BankWork$, I knew nothing about the financial services industry,” said Divya. “I was beginning a totally new chapter of life, and it was overwhelming at first to learn so many different things. One of the reasons I loved the class so much was our instruction staff–I couldn’t have asked for a better instructor to help teach me everything. Whenever you’re trying to begin anything new, having mentors and guidance is so important to success.”   

Divya’s instructor was Cheri Foschi, who has served as the BankWork$ instructor at A New Leaf since the class’s inception in 2016. “Cheri has stayed a mentor to me after I graduated. She’s always asking me about my current role and wants to stay in touch. We were virtual for the whole class due to the pandemic, but she adapted so well and built such a strong bond,” said Divya.  

Cheri remembers Divya as being an extraordinary student and a great class leader. “Divya is one motivated young lady. She is known for establishing rapport with her clients and is 100% committed to meeting their needs. Divya will give ya one hundred percent!” said Cheri. 

“Cheri gave us real-time scenarios to act out and learn from,” said Divya. “The mock interviews especially helped me strengthen my interviewing abilities, so I felt prepared for every question they asked. learned that it’s ok to ask lots of questions, and I’ve grown to be proud of my Indian accent.” 

After graduating from BankWork$, Divya, like all BankWork$ and CareerWork$ Medical graduates, attended a hiring fair with local financial institutions and was met with immediate success. “At the hiring fair I got sixteen job offers!” remarked Divya. In May 2021, Divya accepted a position at Bank of America as a Senior Client Executive. One year later, she was promoted to Senior Fraud Analyst, a role she loves.  

“In my current role I get to think like a detective,” said Divya. “You have to think so many ways of how fraud could have occurred, and you have to consider lots of different factors to protect the client as well as the financial institution. I do lots of background checks and am constantly learning new skills.” 

Bank of America has been a long-term supporter of BankWork$ and has hired hundreds of BankWork$ graduates. CareerWork$ is proud to highlight other BankWork$ alumni from around the country who have gone on to work at Bank of America, including Rozanna Vakhapova, DaVonte Poole, and Jennifer Berg.  

Divya encourages anyone considering BankWork$ to experience the program for themselves. “It was a new chapter for me. I didn’t have any idea how a financial institution worked. I had to learn new terminology, new skills, and how to deal with money. BankWork$ made it not only accessible, but enjoyable to learn!” said Divya.  

To learn more about BankWork$ and our partnership with A New Leaf, click here. The next class begins on October 17, 2022.  

Through BankWork$, Makayla Kayhill-Walton Landed Her Dream Career at US Bank Where She Helps People Every Day With Their Financial Needs

Makayla

Makayla Kayhill-Walton always knew that she wanted to help people. After working as a Certified Nursing Assistant for five years and garnering a reputation for excellent customer service skills, Makayla decided she wanted to enter the financial services industry. When she found the BankWork$ program at Goodwill of Colorado in September of 2020, she felt like the program was made for her, and describes signing up as one of the best decisions she has ever made.  

“Helping people is my greatest passion,” says Makayla. “However, as I’ve gotten older, being on the healthcare front lines was no longer the right fit for me, and I wanted to find a role more on the administrative side. When I first discovered BankWork$, I knew nothing about banking, but learning financial skills came easily to me. What surprised me about the program was learning how to stand out in interviews and make my resume memorable. I learned how to do an elevator pitch, which has helped me to present the best version of myself, and I still use it today! I wouldn’t have learned that without this program.” All BankWork$ and CareerWork$ Medical participants learn how to present themselves in an elevator pitch, where they give a 30-second testimonial showcasing their abilities and personality.  

Makayla attended Candice Sporhase-White and Barbara Colwell’s BankWork$ class from September to November 2020 and feels sentimental when reflecting on her class experience. “I had personal issues that could have prevented me from getting a job, and they helped me overcome those obstacles. They were a shoulder to cry on, and I’ll forever be grateful,” says Makayla.   

Instructor Candice describes Makayla as an exceptional participant who always went the extra mile to help others. “Makayla took all she had learned while in BankWork$ to become a successful team member and leader within US Bank,” says Candice. “Her journey is both inspiring and so genuine, as is her passion to help others like her find success in the financial services industry. She was an inspirational alumni speaker at one of our graduations earlier this year, and expressed to our graduates that if they put into practice all that they have learned and believe in themselves, that their futures know no bounds.” 

After graduating from BankWork$, Makayla, like all CareerWork$ graduates, interviewed with local financial institutions looking to hire immediately. She accepted an offer from US Bank as a Client Relationship Consultant. “I felt like I connected so much with the district managers at US Bank,” says Makayla. “I’ve been here a year and a half now, and have already been promoted twice! In my current role, I work in a combined teller and banker position. I get to do basic things like notarizing documents, creating accounts, making deposits, and selling business credit cards. However, my favorite part of my job is helping elderly clients who often have difficulties with online banking. It reminds me of my nursing days, and it’s so refreshing to see how much they value a human relationship.” 

At US Bank, Makayla has had many opportunities to grow professionally. “I was able to participate in a US Bank LEAD group (Leadership Education Agility and Development), which is a five week program to meet my peers with different goals. My district manager also added me to the McKinsey Black Leadership Academy Experience, which has taught me so much about my influence and leadership as a Black woman.” 

Makayla encourages anyone considering BankWork$ to give it a shot. “You can continue doing what you’re doing now, or you can take that step and see what it’ll do for you. It may change your life as it did mine.” 

With an 83% career placement rate, Goodwill of Colorado has helped place hundreds of BankWork$ graduates into stable, lasting careers. To learn more about BankWork$ and our partnership with Goodwill of Colorado, click here.  


Goodwill of Colorado BankWork$ is hosting an online information session on Monday, Sept. 12, beginning at 12 PM/Noon: Zoom: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85442152820?pwd=SE45SkRpVUFjZmM5MHd1dzhiWEt2QT09  

(Meeting ID: 854 4215 2820 Passcode: 457735) 

Nesha Price Took a “Leap of Faith” By Joining CareerWork$ Medical and Her Whole Career Has Been Turned Upside Down

After getting laid off at the start of the COVID pandemic, Nesha Price wanted a career that could financially support her and her daughter. She got a job at a grocery store, but realized working twelve hours a week wasn’t enough to take care of her family. Nesha had always been interested in healthcare and knew she was a hard worker with great adaptability and organizational skills, but she had no healthcare experience and assumed she would not be able to find a career in the industry. “I wanted to get into healthcare and help make a difference, but I knew I didn’t want to be on the clinical side,” says Nesha. Initially apprehensive about signing up for CareerWork$ Medical because she’d never done a career readiness program, she took a “leap of faith” and says it turned her “whole life upside down”in the best possible way.   

Nesha was easily able to fit attending Diana Monge’s class at JVS SoCal into her schedule while working at the grocery store on the weekends. “I was on the fence about signing up because I didn’t know what to expect. I didn’t even know if I would get a job, but I figured that I have nothing to lose. I can only gain by signing up. In class, we learned a lot of technical parts of working at an administrative job, but what I didn’t expect was that the class would give me a new sense of confidence. Before this class, I would look at a place like Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, and never think I’d be able to work there since I have no previous healthcare education or experience. But this class taught me to trust my abilities and find my confidence.”

Diana, Nesha’s instructor, speaks highly of her former participant. “During our time in CareerWork$, Nesha highlighted her leadership skills by always being the first to participate and lead in discussion, in other words, she helped me run the class. I had no doubt that she would be the first to get hired. She is not only a role model to her beautiful daughter but a role model to all our candidates. Every opportunity I get, I share Nesha’s story and notice this glimpse of hope in our students as they realize ‘I could be the next Nesha!’ I always say ‘with the right drive and level of motivation, you all can get there too!’ Not only is Nesha a hardworking go-getter, but she is also kind, compassionate, and always willing to go above and beyond to help those around her, which is rare to find. She certainly deserves all the promotions, and I would not at all be surprised if one day she is the lead in charge.”

Upon graduating, Nesha, like all CareerWork$ Medical and BankWork$ graduates, Nesha interviewed with local healthcare institutions looking to hire now. She completed four interviews with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, for a role as a Senior Administrative Assistant. “When I Interviewed at CHLA, I knew this was the right fit for me. My recruiter was so encouraging and welcoming. As I’ve gotten to know my supervisor, I have been so moved by the level of love and support she’s shown me. She helped support me when my daughter got COVID, she helped me find an apartment, and even sent me care packages when I was sick. Although my work atmosphere is mostly remote, we all take care of each other.” In her role as a Senior Administrative Assistant, Nesha’s main responsibilities are calendar management, scheduling travel plans for CHLA, and other administrative duties. In June 2022, she was promoted to Executive Assistant at CHLA.

“Sometimes I’ll have imposter syndrome, and feel like I don’t deserve this job, but I know I do. CareerWork$ helped show me that I am capable, smart, and deserving of success. This program taught me to chase what I want and that it’s not out of reach. I’ve always wanted to get into project management, and once I mentioned that to my supervisor, she’s helped me jump in on lots of new projects. To anyone who’s thinking about changing their career, seek out training. The application took less than five minutes to complete, and now I’m in a career where I can support my family —all it took was a leap of faith.”

Congratulations, Nesha, on your career growth and success, and we can’t wait to see what you accomplish next.

To learn more about CareerWork$ Medical and our partnership with JVS SoCal, click here. Their next class begins on October 17, 2022.