Workforce Success Story Submitted By:
Southern Maryland JobSource

Meet Catherine

Workforce Challenge

Catherine Downey came into the WIA program after suffering a serious of personal tragedies that had prevented her from returning to full time employment. She came into the program resolved to use her extensive administrative skills productively in the workforce and provide for her family.

Workforce Solution

Janet Hanke, her WIA Case Manager worked with her to develop and Individual Service Strategy that included active Job Club attendance, out of the box job search strategies and close contact with the Business Services Representative (BSR), Barbara DeHenzel. Ms. Downey consistently attended Job Clubs, even when her spirits weren’t always high. There were tears as well as laughter at those Job Clubs.

Outcomes & Benefits

In anticipation of a very busy Customized Recruitment effort in our office, the BSR asked Ms. Downey if she would be available to assist with coordinating the large number of job seekers expected for the event. Ms. Downey happily agreed and assisted greatly. This also gave her a chance to get to know other members of the JobSource office staff. When the Office Supervisor, Lynne Chick was informed that funding was available for a contractual state employee to assist with the EUCREA program in Southern Maryland, she insisted that Ms. Downey be at the top of the list for the position. Ms. Downey is now a full time contractual state of Maryland employee and is hoping for an opportunity to become a permanent member of the staff.
In an e-mail that she sent to Congressman Steny Hoyer during her job search, she stated that “Janet Hanke and Barbara DeHenzel have been a lifeline to those of us in St. Mary’s County who are looking earnestly for gainful employment.”

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