The U.S. Economy added NO new jobs in August, keeping the unemployment rate at 9.1 percent. The New York Times reports that this is the first time there was no net increase in jobs in the past 11 months. The numbers are scary, but this is not the first time unemployment has been high.
Even when the unemployment rate is lower, there are still many people seeking jobs. Finding employment can be a job in and of itself. And a lack of networking skills and professional resume can be the first stumbling block for many.
When it seems like all of your faith is gone and you feel like the devil himself is thwarting your job search; consider going to an Employment Assistance and Resource Network (EARN) meeting at St. Patrick Parish in Yorktown Heights, N.Y.
EARN has been holding monthly meetings since 1989. The program was established by then-pastor Msgr. Dermott Brennan to assist a growing number of unemployed parishioners. EARN is not a job placement center, it's a community support system for those looking for employment. Over the course of 20+ years, the group has assisted hundreds of people with their job search. The group welcomes believers and non-believers alike; providing fellowship, trust and emotional support to job seekers.
The meetings are facilitated by coordinators, Ed McEneney, Sal Pizzuro and Tom Tilston. Guest speakers cover topics such as: search strategies, résumés, interview skills, computer literacy and salary negotiation. September’s speaker was Frank Harvey, a recent retiree from Lee Hecht Harrison a global consulting company. The attendees consisted of a man who found out that day his job was being eliminated to individuals who have been on the hunt for more than a year. The topic was “Jump Starting a Stalled Search.”
Mr. Harvey addressed reasons why a job search may come to a standstill. Some believe they have gotten to a point where they have exhausted all possible network contacts. Frank stated that this is rarely the case. One must constantly cultivate their network circle by revisiting contacts and connecting with new ones. It is difficult not to get downhearted when you are faced with rejection. Harvey told the group, “The most important word in job search is resilience.”
After the guest speaker the meeting continues with some networking. Attendees tell the group what they would like help with and share ways they can help the others. The meetings begin and end with a prayer.
EARN generally meets the first Thursday of every month. For more information email: Ed@earnatstpats.com or call the rectory: 914.962.5050.