New JWCC Career Readiness Center Helps Clients Cruise through Employment Search

New Career Cruising Software Provides “Virtual Internship” Experience

John Wood Community College’s new Career Readiness Center helps students and community members more confidently identify local careers that match their respective skills and interests.

“We understand that not everyone has a clear picture of their future career and that those who are in a career field may want to change, but aren’t sure how to make it happen,” Dick Tabb, JWCC career assessment coordinator said.

JWCC’s new center provides free, one-on-one support, which includes educational and work experience assessments, employment search assistance, workshops and a new form of virtual career exploration.  The center can also help people update their resume’, brush up on interviewing skills, or research salary ranges and open positions.

Individuals can make appointments to receive work and educational assessments to determine existing knowledge and identify new skills that might be necessary for a new career. Following the assessment, JWCC staff may recommend several options.

“Sometimes people need to update computer skills or may benefit from enrolling in a certificate or degree program to gain a credential,” Tabb said.  “In other cases, we may help them connect with an employer, update their resume’ or enhance their interviewing skills.”

In addition to work and educational assessments, clients can take advantage of new Career Cruising software.  JWCC staff can guide clients through a series of questions that help identify compatible careers. The software then provides a virtual internship of sorts, by providing detailed descriptions of daily tasks, job descriptions, salary ranges and employment opportunities locally and nationally.

 “When people can see the daily tasks of certain careers, they have a better picture of if it would be a good fit for them,” Tabb said.  You can get an idea of the field without accepting a position and realizing it’s not entirely for you.”

Tim Westberg, who recently completed JWCC’s Computer-Aided Design program, spent a small amount of time at the Career Readiness Center, with a huge payoff.

“I didn’t even use all of the resources they have available, but in a short time they helped me improve my resume’, made contacts that resulted in an internship, and just a couple weeks ago I landed a job as a result of that internship.”

The Career Readiness Center also works with local industries, Great River Economic Development Foundation and other local sources of employment to align the needs of business owners with JWCC career and technical programs to help train a capable workforce to help maintain and grow the regional economy.

To make an appointment or learn more, contact Jake Houston at jhouston@jwcc.edu or 217.641.4941.  The center is located in JWCC’s Paul Heath Community Education and Fine Arts Center, room D128 on the Quincy campus at 48th and Harrison.