The Umpqua Community College Job Opportunity Basic Skills (JOBS) program is contracted by the Department of Human Services (DHS), to provide training and educational opportunities, for people who are eligible for Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) and Foodstamps. The purpose of the contract is to place clients in training and educational activities, so they can develop or enhance the necessary skills to find and maintain employment.
Workforce Readiness Classes
The classes offer two weeks of professional development. Topics include Effective Communication, Conflict Resolution, Work Ethics and Problem Solving, Stress Management, Attitude and First Impressions, and Prioritization and Goal Setting. These classes are to prepare participants to enter the workforce, and provide them with an understanding for specific traits employers are looking for in an employee.
The objective of the work experience program is to provide meaningful work experience for TANF participants in the community. Currently, there are 214 sites that have been established in Douglas County. Participants benefit from hands-on training, networking, and sometimes employment.
JOBS Plus is a subsidized program administered by DHS. Individuals receiving TANF can be placed with private or public employers and receive a subsidy for wages paid. Employers determine the wage rate and pay the worker directly. JOBS Plus workers receive a paycheck in lieu of public benefits. There is no requirement that the employer hire the worker at the end of the JOBS Plus subsidy. Employers are reimbursed by DHS at the Oregon minimum wage plus employer wage taxes and workers' compensation costs. Employers are reimbursed for a maximum of 26 weeks.
Staff are available for individualized orientations that will guide participants in the appropriate ways to seek employment, and document the progress they have made. Participants attend weekly work shops in Career Exploration and Skill Development. The classes will provide information on how to improve communication skills, so they can feel confident when speaking to employers. The work shops also assist participants in applying for jobs online, in addition to creating a cover letter and resume. Other topics include professional dress and mock interviews. Ultimately, the goal of the job search work shop is to assist participants in standing out when they are seeking employment.
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