Meet Julia

Goodwill Program Participant

“The digital literacy was so important because there is so much new technology.”

In 2018, Julia was working in a Goodwill retail store but she had always wanted to transition to a job in administration. Julia is deaf and had previously found her disability to be an extreme challenge when facing the job application process and subsequent interviews. She decided to take advantage of some of the career advancement and support programs that Goodwill offered and registered for Goodwill services.

With the guidance of her Career Case Manager (CCM), Julia created a career plan and attended career advancement training like resume workshops, digital literacy, and soft skills for professional dress and behavior. Says Julia, “The digital literacy was so important because there is so much new technology.” It was critical to Julia that she learn to do things for herself. She also received support services like financial assistance for clothing and transportation to get to job interviews and hiring events. Julia says that she was very grateful for the patience of her CCM. As before, she faced many challenges in gaining American Sign Language (ASL) accommodations during interviews but her CCM helped her navigate the complexities of the application process. Soon after, she accepted a short-term clerical position with the State of Texas, putting her newly acquired skills to work while gaining on-the-job experience.

When a position came open with the Federal Government, Julia jumped at the opportunity. Her CCM provided coordinated, one-on-one assistance during the lengthy application process, which included providing documentation of her disability, and requesting accommodations during the interview process. Throughout this time, Julia remained steadfast in her goal, and in the spring of 2020, she excitedly shared that she had gotten the job!

While 46.7% of people who are deaf are unemployed according to the National Deaf Center (2019), Julia overcame this bleak statistic and found a sustainable position that she loves. She’s pleased to report that her boss is impressed with her work and she knows she is gaining the vital job experience she needs to continue her career path. Says Julia of her journey with Goodwill, “It was a good challenge but a blessing, too.”