I am a senior Biology major and Art minor at Providence College. I applied to PrepareRI and was given the opportunity to work for Amgen Rhode Island, a biotech company with a mission to serve patients. I had stressed to PrepareRI during the interview process that I truthfully did not know where I see myself in the next few years. They placed me where they saw me best fit. And now, I have been given the opportunity to go back to Amgen as soon as I graduate to work as a leader in their 2-year rotational program. PrepareRI gave me the amazing opportunity to work for Amgen and find my true passion in the biotech field. I would not have been given this awesome opportunity without the help of PrepareRI’s Internship Program. I will forever be thankful.
Michael Meier is a 19-year Civil Service Veteran, having spent 11-years in the U.S. Air Force and 8-years in Federal Law Enforcement. Michael is highly organized, career focused and a goal-oriented professional with talent for adaptability, strategic planning, and problem solving. Michael joined the August Ready.Set.Work! Veteran’s cohort to fine-tune his resume, gain expert interview advice, network with local Rhode Island Veteran’s, and establish a foothold into the changing workforce.
When asked about Ready.Set.Work! , Michael said, “Ready.Set.Work! helped me reset my focus and dial in on the direction that I see my career going. This training brought inspirational tools and methods that will benefit my career goals and ambitions.” Michael recently was accepted into the September cohort of the Process Technician training, and looks forward to rebranding himself to a new career pathway.
Die Rule Maker & CNC Operator, WR Sharples
“At 52 years old, I never thought I’d be able to make a life changing career move and learn an entirely new skill. After 32 years of working in the restaurant industry, I was laid off due to COVID-19. I was left unemployed, in the dark, and had no idea what to do. However, I’ve always had an interest in machining and welding. A training program with SkillsRI caught my eye, so I applied. I was cynical at first, but working with SkillsRI was a great experience. I worked with their team member Duncan, who was very easy to talk to and excited to help me enroll in the training. I learned things that would have been totally lost on me had I not participated in this program, like how to market myself with a resume and good interviewing skills – I had never filled out a resume in my life! The program really opened my eyes. As part of the program, we also had five weeks of welding training. The teacher was so positive and very encouraging. He made me feel comfortable to ask as many questions as I wanted. Sometimes, that meant we were there a little longer than expected, but I firmly believe that the effort you put in is what you’ll get out. And I was right! When I applied for my job at WR Sharples as a Die Rule Maker and CNC Operator, I was worried I didn’t have enough experience. But the SkillsRI training helped, and the owner of my company was really impressed with my resume. Now, I love going to work! It’s challenging, everything is different and every day is new. My wife even notices the difference in my mindset. I want people to know that it’s never too late to change your career. If you have the opportunity, just do it.”
“Since the pandemic started, working from home has really appealed to me, but I didn’t think I’d be lucky enough to find the right job amid COVID-19. To my surprise, it only took a few emails and a series of interviews through Skills for Rhode Island’s Future to get me a job that not only allows me to work from home, but also make a great impact in the community.
Through Skills for Rhode Island’s Future, I was able to get a job working for AAA roadside service assistance. Initially, I was nervous about what working from home would look like with AAA, but AAA has shown me how workforces can be resilient and adjust during tough times. The company wasted no time in showing me how easy it is to set up a work-from-home office, and team members made themselves available to answer all of my questions and also helped me get to know them better, which put me at ease.
Working for roadside service has shown me how essential our jobs are to keeping others safe. I love being able to take a stressful conversation with a customer and turn it into a positive one that ends with a feeling of ease, support, a laugh and often a thank you. This job is an opportunity to help me keep my family safe, while earning and learning new skills for the current workforce. It allows me to live the lifestyle I’ve always envisioned for myself.”
“I moved to the US from Nigeria in 2019, and I was home without a job when COVID-19 hit. While watching TV one day, I heard Governor Gina Raimondo asking for people to come out and help make N95 face masks for healthcare workers, and I decided I wanted to make an impact.
I contacted SkillRI to become a volunteer, and within a week, they emailed me to let me know I could work at Honeywell making masks, and I could get paid to do it!
There is something so unique about the staff at SkillsRI. Without having met any of the recruiters in person, they’ve become my family. They genuinely care about your wellbeing, they help you get a job, make sure you are treated well and they even check up on you to see how you are doing.
These are the type of people we need in the world.
When I started at Honeywell, our country was in the midst of a lockdown and I was concerned about contracting COVID-19. Honeywell took all of the necessary precautions to ensure we were safe, from face masks and gloves, to daily temperature checks. It was a huge relief!
Recently, I was promoted to a lead position at the company. A team member who I supervise came up to me a few weeks ago and said, ‘I look forward to coming to work every day because of you.’
I realized in that moment that people look up to me, and I have the opportunity to inspire them. It motivates me to constantly be a better version of myself. But perhaps the best part of my job is knowing that I’m making a direct impact on the lives of Americans across the country.”
“Knowing someone is advocating for you during your job search can make a world of difference. I was lucky to have two advocates: Duncan and Kelly at SkillsRI.
Over the past 25 years, my pattern of employment hasn’t been easy, and I had a lot of factors going against me. My father passed away, my mother has been ill, and I’ve been caring for a disabled family member. In addition, I was in recovery for drug addiction, and I had a variety of dead-end jobs with no hope for a future. I wanted to go back to school to pave a better path for my career, but it wasn’t easy. I was put in touch with Duncan at SkillRI, and he was instrumental in getting me into the Rhode Island Marine Trades Association Program, where I earned my composite technician pre-apprentice certificate from CCRI. It is an achievement that makes me incredibly proud.
After receiving my certification, Kelly, a recruiter at SkillsRI, kept in touch with me, checking in to see if I had found a job and presenting new opportunities that were a good fit based on my credentials. With her continued support and encouragement, I was able to find a job as a Composite Technician at Goetz Composites, where I can carve out a future for myself. I know people who been placed at Goetz through SkillsRI and are now VPs and supervisors at the company. I’ve been working here for a month, and I love what I do. I wake up every morning with a positive outlook and with hope for a brighter future. SkillsRI gave me that hope, and I’m thankful to be able to do something that I know will make my son proud.”
“I relocated to Rhode Island with 10 years of experience as a graphic designer. After months of applying for jobs without any luck, I was referred by a friend to Nick, a SkillsRI job recruiter. Nick quickly matched me to the perfect job opening at the Rhode Island Commerce Corporation (RICC) and submitted my qualifications for review. Days later I was called in for an interview – ironic since I had previously applied to this same posting through the company’s website and never heard back. After being invited back for a second interview, I was thrilled to receive a job offer as RICC’s new graphic designer! It took a lot of work and effort, researching the company, making sure my portfolio was up-to-date, and preparing extensively for my interviews. But I will always be grateful to SkillsRI for opening the door to such an amazing opportunity!”
“I was accepted into the PrepareRI program as an alternate, with no guarantees that I would end up with an internship. That didn’t stop me from attending the Bootcamp training because I felt something good would come out of it, and it did. Luckily, I got placed at Home Health & Hospice Care of Nursing Placement through one of our networking lunches and I went from being shy to bursting out of my shell. It was my first job and the best part is that I was able to see what the real working environment is like – from good days to crazy days, and they ended up hiring me when the internship ended. All of the employees help each other and are as close as family. I want to give a special thank you to Nursing Placement for helping me outgrow my shyness and be able to share my ideas, but most of all for believing that I was and am a good fit for the job.”
“I had the opportunity to work at the Governor’s office, a transformative experience that taught me to not limit myself and give back to my community. I live on the South Side of Providence, a predominantly immigrant Hispanic community – minorities who are new to political nuances and uninformed due to language barriers. Through my internship I was tasked with disseminating information to the general public and educating the Hispanic community about decisions being made in our state. As a Latina immigrant I am not expected to be interested in government, but I learned to challenge those expectations during my internship and was empowered to speak and act in ways that serve my community so that they too can find their voice. As I go into college I will continue to stand up for those who are underrepresented and advocate for my community.”