Noel first came to the WIA department in November of 2012. He was a 54 year old male; unemployed, dropped out of school, recently lost his job, temporarily disabled, and had a bad background. He seemed to very down on his luck and unhappy with his situation. He was living in Ringold, OK and at this time it was very difficult to find employment.
Choctaw Nation immediately began working on putting together a resume for him to take when applying for jobs along with a brochure informing the employer about our adult training programs. We visited websites such as choctawcareers.com and hirechoctaws.com. I also mentioned our Adult Education program that would assist him with obtaining his GED. We spoke to Emergency Assistance and LIHEAP to assist with rent and utilities. Discussed Career Development and the Career Readiness Certificate.
On his next visit Noel had expressed that he would like to become a physical therapist or PT assistant. We went over the amount of schooling and programs he would need to go through to obtain this goal. Later he decided he wanted to work on computers and rebuild them. Noel’s aspirations seemed be endless now, he was feeling as if he could do anything! He had turned in the application to Adult Education and soon after began participating in the GED classes in Broken Bow. After his second visit I noticed a change in attitude, he wanted to increase his knowledge, gain skills he never thought he could, and completely change his life around.
Mr. Gardner and I remained in contact with one another over the months. On May 7th, 2013, I received a call from him stating that he had completed the GED course, passed his test and was working the night shift at Tyson Foods, Inc. He attended his graduation in Wilburton, OK at East Central University on May 17.
His next goal was to eventually move to Durant, OK to find employment and attend the Kiamichi Technology Center. He has moved to Boswell, OK and is living with his sister until he earns enough money to move into an apartment in Durant. He and his son had been visiting the office frequently working on job searches, researched training programs, and practiced typing lessons to enhance his skills.
Due to Noel’s hard work and dedication I have recently been informed that he was hired on by the City of Durant, as a Flatbed Driver, and working full time. He also plans to attend evening classes at the Kiamichi Technology Center. He is determined to learn more every day.
On June 07, 2013 he had came in the office to visit and expressed his most sincere gratitude for the program and assistance he received. Noel had stated that when he first came into our office he was very unhappy with his life and felt there was nothing left. His mother had passed in August and his circumstances were less than satisfactory.
While in our office Noel would often joke and state that he wants an office job, in the air conditioning, and easy going. He wanted a job just like mine. But, on this day Noel stated that it had hit him last night that this job was not about sitting in the air conditioning, money, or ease of work. He understood that it was about caring for each individual situation and working hard to bring them out of that place of darkness. To help them see the light and guide them to a better life where they can stand on their own. He stated the best way for him to show is gratitude was to use the new attitude and outlook on life that he had gained and share it with others.
I know that with this newborn attitude and self confidence, Noel will achieve many great things in his life.