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North carolina

Workforce Success Story Submitted By:
Northwest Piedmont Workforce Development Board

Meet Peggy

Customer Photo

Workforce Challenge

Peggy Johnson, 41, a single mother of two teen girls, was laid off in January, 2007, a textile manufacturer when operations were shifted outside of the United States. Peggy had worked there since 1999, and was the Assistant Production Planner. This was her second textile/apparel employer in 20 years. However, she was aware that the textile/apparel industry in NC was declining, so she had begun thinking about a career change prior to the layoff, and sought assistance from the Northwest Piedmont Workforce Development Board.

Workforce Solution

In October 2006, Peggy received funding through the Workforce Development Program and began taking classes at night for her nursing prerequisites. Peggy quickly established herself as a dedicated WDP customer – willing to work with the process and develop alternative action plans if necessary to ensure her career goals were achieved. By mid-spring 2007, she was nearly finished with her pre-requisite courses for acceptance by Surry Community College into the RN class of 2009, and she successfully completed the Certified Nursing Assistant pre-requisite.

Meanwhile, Peggy secured a part-time position with the local hospital, serving as Unit Secretary/Nurse Aide on an ‘as-needed’ basis. This gave her several advantages: experience using her CNA credential; work experience in hospital-based healthcare; a professional connection to a potential future employer; and income to supplement her weekly unemployment benefit check (without supplementation, the family of 3 exists on $1392/month).

Outcomes & Benefits

Peggy received her degrees and is now employed full time as a Registered Nurse at Northern Hospital in Surry County. Peggy says she will always be grateful to the WDP/WIA program and to her Career Facilitator, DeAnna, "for believing enough in me to give me this wonderful opportunity. Words cannot express my gratitude. But thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

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