Friday, November 5, 2010

Job Seekers Graduate from Inaugural LA Fellows Class

Thirty LA Fellows graduate from unique training and volunteer program

Los Angeles, CA – Los Angeles Valley College’s Job Training department will celebrate the graduation of the inaugural class of the LA Fellows program. Thirty participants are graduating from the program, including four individuals who have already been offered full-time employment positions. The graduation ceremony will take place at Los Angeles Valley College at 5800 Fulton Avenue in Van Nuys on Friday, November 12, at 1 p.m. in the college’ s Fireside Room in the Campus Center Building.

“I am truly grateful for the opportunity to be part of the LA Fellows program because I can say that it was this program that has reenergized me, and motivated me to believe in continuing to pursue the career that I really wanted,” said Patrice Alvey. “It gave me the right career coaching, which strengthened my belief that I could achieve my career goals of transitioning from advertising and publishing to healthcare.” Alvey will begin her new position as Utilization Management Coordinator II at Health Net, Inc. later this month.

The LA Fellows program provides unemployed individuals with skills training and volunteer opportunities while they seek full-time positions. The first class of LA Fellows was selected through an application and interview process. They received seven weeks of training at Los Angeles Valley College covering executive-level topics including critical thinking, navigating the hidden job market, and grant writing. In return, participants volunteer their time and talents by sharing their professional expertise through project-based roles at local nonprofits.

Alvey is currently volunteering with The Music Unlocks Success In Children (M.U.S.I.C.) Foundation. Other LA Fellows are volunteering for organizations including Valley Village, Tree People, and Meeting Each Need with Dignity (MEND).

“Valley Village is thrilled to be participants in the LA Fellows program,” Jenny Daniels Freese, Director, Development and Marketing, Valley Village. “Our Fellow is amazing and while she is learning from us, we are learning from her as well. The Fellows program is a wonderful training program for displaced workers and we are happy to be a part of the training experience.”

Los Angeles Valley College Job Training created the LA Fellows Program in partnership with Valley Industry & Commerce Association, City of Los Angeles Community Development Department, The Valley Economic Alliance, Employment Development Department, Los Angeles Valley College Foundation, Los Angeles Community College District, and the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce. The fellowship was made possible through funding from the City of Los Angeles Community Development Department through the City of Los Angeles Workforce Investment Board.

As a result of this pilot LA Fellows program, 120 unemployed individuals will each receive 140 hours of training and will volunteer 100 hours. Throughout the program, LA Fellows participants acquire new skill sets, encounter countless opportunities to network with professionals, and project a marketable career candidate impression while presenting a community-focused image. In addition, participating nonprofits will gain a highly skilled volunteer to assist with a project at their organization.

“This is a much needed bridge to help our local job seekers,” notes Fran Inman, immediate past chair of the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce. “Los Angeles Valley College, the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce, and their partners are finding creative and resourceful ways of supporting the essential work of our nonprofits. These job seekers will not only gain marketable career skills but will help these organizations with the important work they do for our community.”

Job seekers and nonprofits are encouraged to visit for more information.

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