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Job Seekers

Success Stories

The One Stops and the WIB are always interested to hear success stories of our customers. Below is one recent success story. If you are a current or past One Stop customer and would like to submit a success story, please feel free to e-mail or contact the WIB office directly.

"A former WIA participant, Greg W., stopped in the One Stop today. Greg first came to the One Stop in early 2006, working with the JOBS program. He had just been released from an 8 year prison sentence during which he had studied HVAC. From the start, Greg was very determined that he was going to succeed and really worked hard to do job search. After numerous attempts and many denials, the One Stop helped Greg find employment at the Olean YMCA, which he held for a year. At that time, Greg felt he wanted to try to work in HVAC. Through the WIA program, in July 2007, Greg entered into a WIA OJT at "D.H. Berry" doing HVAC (we also supplied tools for his job). He has remained in employ with them since and has moved to Erie County. This summer (2008), Greg felt he was ready to advance. He applied at ECC North for the HVAC Certification program and was denied admission due to his criminal past.

Most would have been disheartened and given up. Greg instead approached his former employer (Olean YMCA), his current employer (DH Berry), the One Stop and several people for whom he had done residential HVAC work, asking for letters of recommendation - each was happy to assist. In addition, he wrote a truly heartfelt letter of his own asking for reconsideration.

Yesterday, Greg was notified that he was accepted at ECC. Through TAP, PELL and the Buffalo E&T, he will be attending beginning this fall for "next to nothing" while continuing to work at DH Berry part time.

He made a point of stopping in here to thank Larry Knight in particular, and myself for all that was done for him and for believing in him. He also made a point of wanting me to thank Dianne Costa for helping him early on during the JOBS program. He was extremely emotional, on the verge of tears while trying to convey his gratitude.

I just wanted to pass this along. We all know we do good things and help people change their lives for the better, but we don't always get the thanks and appreciation that Greg offered."

— Submitted by Bret Marvin, Olean One Stop Manager – 7/25/08