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Workforce Success Story Submitted By:
South Central Oklahoma Workforce Investment Board

Meet Charles

Workforce Challenge

Charles recognized at an early age that he was different from all his friends. While they were able to run, romp, and play, he had difficulty doing these things. Charles was born blind and had to make adjustments to his world. While completing his formal education in Arizona he discovered he had a profound interest in computers. Charles met and fell in love with an "Okie" over the internet and moved to Oklahoma. His need to become employed became first priority.

Workforce Solution

Charles visited with a Workforce Investment Act (WIA) counselor at the Ft. Sill Workforce office. Assessments were available and encouraged to maximize a customer's job-seeking results. However, the assessments were not designed to be used by the visually impaired. Charles' desire to be self-sufficient and to complete the same requirements as a sighted person was the driving force behind his using Jobs Access With Speech (JAWS) system and the Open Book Program to translate all the printed assessment material in to a speech program that allowed him to complete the entire assessment process.

Outcomes & Benefits

Charles received a Silver Oklahoma Career Readiness Certificate (CRC) and special recognition from the Department of Rehabilitative Services (DRS) for his work in translating the assessments into a format usable by the blind. Charles is now employed full time helping other disabled customers navigate the websites necessary for assessments. Charles is still shocked at the difference that WIA made in his life.

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