By Chandler Dickson
Journeys aren’t easy, but they are worth the effort. They are paved with many decisions, turning points and even failures. You can’t avoid the hardships, but you can vastly change how you perceive them. If you view challenges as a way of improving yourself and learning, there’s no way for you to go backwards.
I started my Goodwill journey as a retail associate of the Russellville store. At first, I wasn’t expecting to be fully enthralled with the company. However, I quickly changed my perspective when I met one of the life coaches, Jayme Hayes. She informed me about The Academy at Goodwill, a school for non-traditional students to gain specialized sk
ills and certifications. I let Jayme know I was really interested in Information Technology (IT). She told me to keep a look out for programs that The Academy has to offer because often new ones are added.
I moved up in the company from an associate to a manager. Then through hard work and determination, I was able to move up to the very position I wanted in the IT department. I realized Goodwill truly wants to give its employees the tools they need to get better jobs.
The biggest tips I can share is to have a positive attitude, a willingness to learn and network. If people know about your goals, they are more likely to recommend related opportunities to you. I did not have all the requirements I needed to work in IT, but the connections that I built helped me grow at Goodwill. Never neglect fostering good relationships with those around you, because you never know what doors that person could open for you. If you have a goal you truly want, visualizing the end point can be the difference between giving up and actually achieving it.
The great thing about Goodwill is they want you to learn, grow and find the best version of yourself. In fact, I am still learning and growing! I am currently taking an IT course at The Academy. It is helping me further understand the ins and outs of IT.
Your journey at Goodwill can be rewarding. It certainly has been for me. Goodwill cares about your goals, they care about who you want to become, and they will do anything they can to get you to where you want to be. I am so thankful to Goodwill for giving me the opportunity to be able to grow in my career through education, training and employment.