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Our Success

John Lucas
Career Planning

John Lucas came into the Job Center in November of 2022 said he was having trouble filing his unemployment and was very frustrated.  John had no vehicle, so he walked from his home across town in Litchfield to our office.

He had come in week after week trying to get things set up with his unemployment.  There were problems from uploading his personal documentation to their system having issues.  It was taking a very long time, but eventually things got figured out.

In the meantime, John was also looking for employment.  I helped John build his résumé and upload it into the computer, so that he could get on Indeed and apply to places like Rural King, Dometic, Mr. Fuel, Burger King and many others.

John was finally called by Burger King to start work doing ground maintenance.  John was super happy. At first when he came to the Job center he could only walk across town, as he had no transportation.  Soon he was able to find a motorized bike and now that he had a job, he said he was hopeful of getting a car.  Unfortunately, Burger King did not work out.  But John kept riding his bike around town dropping off his résumé. 

Many months had went by when John had stopped back into the Job Center.  He had a big old smile on his face when he walked in.  I said “John I haven’t seen you for a while, how are things going?”  John looked at me and said, “Turn around.”   I turned around to look out the Job Center window and there in the parking lot was a van.  John said, “I was in a bad place, and you told me to keep going.  You said, since all’s you want is a job to be able to get a vehicle, then that is your job.  You get up in the morning and you keep looking for that job and you will find it.   So I kept looking and I got two part time jobs.  And I was able to renew my license and get a loan and now I don’t have to ride in the cold anymore.  He said he was so happy and excited to finally get it, he had to come and show me.   I told him that is amazing, from where you were to where you are and I knew you would do it.

Matthew Trusler
Automotive Technology

Matthew came to our office requesting assistance for the Automotive Technology Certification Program through Lincoln Land Community College.  During our first meeting and interviewing process I asked Matthew why this program is of interest to him?  Matthew stated that he liked working with his hands and learning new things.  A job where he’s not doing the same thing day in and day out with always something different to work on and seeing results.  Matthew also stated that he had visited the school has spoken with Financial Aid and is attending the program orientation.  Matthew was also awarded a scholarship through Morgan Scott Cass Community Services (MCS).  From my first visit with Matthew he has shown he is motivated his dedication and determination in taking his training and career choice seriously.  Matthew has now finished his training and has earned his Certificate of Achievement in Automotive Technician with High Honors and is employed by United Contractors Midwest (UCM) in Winchester, Illinois.

Janice Parkhill
Certified Medical Assistant

Janice Parkhill came to our Shelbyville office, as a single mother looking for WIOA funding to go to Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) classes at Lake Land College. She had previously worked as a paramedic and loves working in the medical field. She is currently working as a bus driver and wants to get back into a career in a care giving capacity, making more money to better support herself and her daughter. She started her courses at Lake Land in August of 2022 and has recently received her certificate as a CMA and will get her Associates in the spring of 2024.

I had the pleasure of being invited to and attending her pinning ceremony. Janice was so happy with the help that I/we provided her, that she wanted me to be a part of her celebration. On that night, she was beaming with pride and also wrote on her tribute board, thanking me for helping her make this a reality.

Rileigh Kerchowski-Cox
Dental Assistant Program

Rileigh’s journey began with our agency after she had successfully completed the Dental Assistant Program through Lewis and Clark Community College where Rileigh received her Associates in Science with Honors from Lewis and Clark Community College May of 2021.

 

From my first interview with Rileigh, I could tell Rileigh is a very personable, detailed-oriented, focused individual determined to successfully become a Dental Hygienist. While working with Rileigh and ordering the required supplies for the program Rileigh was very thankful and appreciative of all the assistance, we were able to offer including her travel allowance throughout the program.

 

Each semester Rileigh was very accommodating in bringing me the required documents needed from each semester and getting ready for the next as well as keeping in monthly contacts. As of December, 2023 Rileigh has successfully passed her Dental Hygiene Program through Lewis and Clark Community College with a GPA of 3.1318. Rileigh is currently studying for her State Boards which she plans on taking later this month and working diligently with her job search. lt has been a pleasure working with Rileigh and seeing her succeed opening the door to a career where she will be able to continue to grow and build such a bright and exciting future for herself and son. 1 wish Rileigh much success.

Kenneth Jackson
Commercial Truck Driving - CDL

At age 55 and considering himself to be a homeless individual, as he was staying with a friend, Kenneth Jackson came into the Jacksonville Job Center office seeking assistance to become a truck driver.  Kenneth had spent a number of years behind bars since the age of 17, and it was during an incarceration at a young age that he remembered completing registration forms for Selective Service.  However, somehow this registration did not get properly processed, and Kenneth was not compliant with the Selective Service law. 

Now at age 55 he was too old to just get registered, and he had to complete paperwork to send in to the Selective Service Administration.  Kenneth said that he clearly remembered completing this when he was at the Logan Correctional Center, he was granted a waiver, and was cleared for assistance through the WIOA program. 

Kenneth started the CDL program at 160 Driving Academy in April 2023 and completed the program in a month.  He passed his driving test at the Secretary of State DMV on his first try!  He obtained employment with an excavation company in the area and is very grateful for this life changing career opportunity.

Rileigh’s journey began with our agency after she had successfully completed the Dental Assistant Program through Lewis and Clark Community College where Rileigh received her Associates in Science with Honors from Lewis and Clark Community College May of 2021. 

From my first interview with Rileigh, I could tell Rileigh is a very personable, detailed-oriented, focused individual determined to successfully become a Dental Hygienist. While working with Rileigh and ordering the required supplies for the program Rileigh was very thankful and appreciative of all the assistance, we were able to offer including her travel allowance throughout the program. Each semester Rileigh was very accommodating in bringing me the required documents needed from each semester and getting ready for the next as well as keeping in monthly contacts.

As of December, 2023 Rileigh has successfully passed her Dental Hygiene Program through Lewis and Clark Community College with a GPA of 3.1318. Rileigh is currently studying for her State Boards which she plans on taking later this month and working diligently with her job search. lt has been a pleasure working with Rileigh and seeing her succeed opening the door to a career where she will be able to continue to grow and build such a bright and exciting future for herself and son. 1 wish Rileigh much success.

Jennifer Daniels
Water Quality Control Operations/Environmental Resource Training 

Jennifer Daniels is an exemplary student enrolled in Environmental Resources Training located at the School of Engineering at SIUE. Jennifer had given up her previous career due to many personal reasons and setbacks. She had reached the glass ceiling and found that she could earn a sustainable income in the Water Quality Control industry.  LWIA #21 was able to step in and provide full support for training and transportation costs throughout the duration of the program. Jennifer is a hard working student earning a high grade point average through the entirety of the program. The knowledge she has gained from the program is invaluable and she is always willing to share information with her fellow students due to her kind and caring nature. Jennifer is on the final stage of the program and is currently working in a paid internship at the Carlinville, IL Water Plant. Her internship will end at the end of July at which point she will proceed into full time employment. The classes and the program were strenuous at times, but with Jennifer’s determination and positive attitude, combined with the assistance of WIOA and LWIA #21, she will have multiple career opportunities and a bright future ahead.

Matthew Belcher
Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

When Matthew Belcher first heard about about WIOA it was through the unfortunate closure of his employer, Schutt Manufacturing/Certor Sports, located in Litchfield, Illinois.  Matthew had been an employee of Schutt for 21 years and although the plant closure had been talked about for 2 years prior to the actual closing, it did not become a reality for Matthew and the other Schutt employees until they received their 60 day notice in September 2022.  The plant was due to close November 18th, 2022.  This had left Matthew wondering what he might do after he no longer had his job and would have to look for work after 2 decades of steady employment.

On November 17th, 2022, the day before the plant was ready to shutter its doors, Matthew participated in a Rapid Response event coordinated by LWIA 21, DCEO, IDES and other partners.  This Rapid Response helped Matthew and others understand what resources and assistance were readily available to assist with their employment transition.

Matthew filed for his unemployment benefits while he started looking for immediate employment.  He came to the Job Center in Litchfield and met with career specialist Dawn Lutz.   She was able to help him build his resume and find answers for questions he had about unemployment and the possibility of going back to school and obtaining his Commercial Driver’s License (CDL).

Matthew had started filling out job applications and had some interviews, but he still kept thinking that he might want to try to get his CDL and drive locally, so he formally filled out a pre-application to see if he would qualify for the WIOA program.  Since Matthew qualified as a dislocated worker, he was able consider the options for CDL training programs.  Matthew chose to go to 160 Driving Academy in Springfield and enroll into their four-week program.  Matthew said that everyone was very friendly and helpful & the training went very well.

Matthew graduated from 160 Driving Academy with a Certificate of Training and achieved his Commercial Driver’s License on May 15th, 2023.  Matthew then started his new truck-driving job the following week, driving and working in the warehouse for Capitol Group.  Capitol Group, with its Corporate Headquarters in Springfield, Illinois, is a leading wholesale distributor of plumbing, heating and air conditioning, industrial/mechanical and kitchen products with centers in Springfield, Litchfield and 6 other locations.

Currently, Matthew continues to reside and work at Capitol’s Litchfield location.  Also, as life can take you in an unexpected direction, it can also lead you back in a circle to where you started.  It just so happens that Capitol Group purchased the former Schutt/Certor buildings where Matthew ended a 21 year long job with Schutt and now has started a new job with Capitol Group.  Congratulations to Matthew on a successful transition into a new career through services provided by LWIA 21, DCEO and the WIOA program.

James Denby, Jr.
Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

James Denby Jr. came in to the Carlinville, IL-LWIA #21 office with very little work history. He had been working as a farm laborer for less than a year, but had a dream to pass his CDL license to better support himself and his son. We coordinated with Lincoln Land Community College to provide the necessary training in order for Jim to obtain his CDL. Jim’s CDL training was made possible under the National Dislocated Worker Quest grant. LWIA #21 provided full support for his training as well as additional assistance including transportation costs throughout the duration of his training. Jim successfully completed his training at Lincoln Land and earned his CDL certificate in January of 2023. He is now employed as a CDL driver for Adam Edwards’s farms. His future looks bright with multiple opportunities for employment and sustainable income as a CDL driver. All of this was made possible with Jim’s determination and perseverance, combined with the help of WIOA and LWIA #21.

Job Center Locations

Macoupin & Greene
County Office

116 South Plum
Carlinville, IL 62626
Phone: 217-854-9642
Fax: 217-854-8082

Montgomery
County Office

108 E. Columbian Blvd., South Unit B Litchfield, IL 62056
Phone: 217-324-2640
Fax: 217-324-2644

Shelby
County Office

515 North Cedar
Shelbyville, IL 62565
Phone: 217-774-5550
Fax: 217-774-4471

Morgan-Scott & Greene
County Office

345 West State Street
Jacksonville, IL 62650
Phone: 217-243-5846
Fax: 217-245-0870

This workforce product was funded by a grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration. The product was created by the recipient and does not necessarily reflect the official position of the U.S. Department of Labor. The Department of Labor makes no guarantees, warranties, or assurances of any kind, express or implied, with respect to such information, including any information on linked sites and including, but not limited to, accuracy of the information or its completeness, timeliness, usefulness, adequacy, continued availability, or ownership. This product is copyrighted by the institution that created it.

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