Working in the Digital Age
Eddie Colquitt joined the Michigan Works! Wayne Service Center’s WIOA Youth Program in February of 2016. He was motivated to earn his GED and just needed a little extra help to accomplish his goal. Eddie knew that he was smart enough to pass the test but was less sure of how he would pay for it. He needn’t have worried as the WIOA Youth Program paid for all four parts of his GED testing. Eddie took full advantage of the opportunity, passing each section on his first attempt!
After he finished earning his GED he was ready to start working. Eddie was interested in designing and selling clothing and his Career Development Facilitator, Jeff Tanner, was able to place him into a Paid Work Experience (PWE) at Flagship Boutique in May of 2016. The PWE opportunity was a great way for Eddie to gain skills and experience in what is typically a difficult-to-enter career field.
Eddie finished his PWE and kept working on his own as a DJ while he looked for work in the retail industry. A few months of searching proved fruitless, although he did find a silver lining in the form of an internship opportunity with Godi Clothing in Farmington. Jeff again saw the PWE as a useful tool in helping his client break into a difficult field. Eddie began what was now a “paid” internship as Godi Clothing’s Social Media Manager where he handled online promotion and social networking. His manager Dom stated, “Eddie is a great worker for us and really does well with Social Media. He has been a great addition to our company and has increased our brand awareness.”
When the PWE ended, Eddie’s hard work had not gone unnoticed and he was hired on full-time with the company! When asked about the WIOA Youth program, Eddie replied that it “really gave me a lot of great opportunities that I would not have had without it. It helped me to work in the clothing industry and gain lots of great experience.”