Career Development Resources for the Unemployed
Where to Find Low Cost or No Cost Job Training and Placement
One of your best resources for career development is your own state Workforce Development and Training center. As a condition of your unemployment you will be expected to apply for work, be available for work, and able to work during your benefit period. You’ll officially do this through your local Workforce office. But you should also be proactively seeking work elsewhere.
Guess what? Most Workforce Centers provide many more services to the unemployed than a simple job search service.
You could qualify to receive career assistance with:
- Job search
- Job placement
- Career planning
- Vocational skills assessments
- Resume and interview skills
- Funds for education
These services are fairly standard and a guarantee of the Federal Workforce Investment Act of 1998.
Job Training Services
In some cases you may qualify for fairly extensive job training. Your income level, ability to secure a job with current skills, the current labor market, and available funds, are just a few of the factors used to determine your qualifications for job or skills training.
Types of training could include:
- Computer skills
- Reading and writing skills
- Occupational and career-oriented skills, such as in healthcare, a high-demand and durable industry.
Educational Career Dev Opportunities
In most counties a certain number of unemployed are approved annually to receive free education at local community colleges. However, during periods of high unemployment these funds are limited and a wide majority of unemployed workers just cannot be funded.
In a few locations you may find your local community college offering deeply discounted courses or programs of study.
Community education programs may also provide valuable and very affordable options for learning new skills. Many offer a wide array of computer classes, and even basic business courses that could jump-start an ailing job search or punch up a weak resume.
Working with the Local Labor Market
When you seek career services with your local Workforce Training Center expect that in most cases your counselor will work very hard to try and match your particular skills and job experience to what’s available in the local job market. Free rides at community colleges are limited and funds for job retraining in general are usually meager.
Other Career Development Options
Vocational Rehabilitation Services
Vocational Rehab Services offer job training and job placement options for disabled and veterans. In fact services are close to those offered through most state Workforce Dev offices, but specialized to the needs of the disabled.
The ultimate federally-funded career development program is Job Corps. If you’re between the ages of 16 and 24, unemployed, underemployed, without a high school diploma and unable to provide for yourself or family, then Job Corps may offer education, job training and placement.