Trust, A Building Block of Success: Michele’s Story

Michele typing on a computerMichele is an employU client who loves research and organizing information. With a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science, she’s a jobseeker that brings a lot of valuable skills and knowledge to the table. Around the same time that Michele joined employU as a client, The Able Trust, one employU’s valued community partners, was looking for a part-time individual to conduct research to expand their reach to their customer base and assist in further developing the services they offer. Instantly Michele’s Employment Specialists knew this would be a perfect match! The Able Trust interviewed Michele, saw what a great fit she would be at their organization, and hired her for an on-the-job-training (OJT). 

Michele’s Employment Specialist, Sheila, had just transferred to the employU Tallahassee office when she had the pleasure of meeting Michele. As Michele started her on-the-job training, Sheila took Michele for a fitting for an ergonomic chair provided by Vocational Rehabilitation. During that trip downtown, Sheila and Michele got to know each other a little better. Though they were focused on the task at hand, an object in Sheila’s car gave Michele the opportunity to open up about the difficulties she was experiencing. A little wooden cross on the dashboard caught Michele’s eye. When she asked Sheila about it, Sheila explained it was something that she kept handy in difficult situations to remind her that she was never alone. Although employU is a secular organization, the little wooden cross opened the door for Michele to talk about being a primary caregiver to her dad, who was diagnosed with cancer. She and her mother both cared for him and took him to his treatments. It was understandably a challenging time for Michele.  

Her on-the-job training with The Able Trust was something she took very seriously and enjoyed even during this difficult time. This experience gave Michele the opportunity to have meaningful employment, a purpose in the community, and the ability to contribute to her family’s finances. After hearing what Michele was going through, Sheila, who knew how much the wooden cross had helped her through tough times, gifted it to Michele to remind her that she always has someone she can trust to lean on during difficult moments in her life. 

Michele continued to work hard, even during her challenging situation at home. Later in the OJT, Michele’s mom also became ill and was hospitalized. To add to the stress, the family was in the midst of finding new housing, packing, and moving. But Michele never gave up. Through regular communications with Jill, Michele’s supervisor at The Able Trust, Sheila continued to receive nothing but positive feedback about Michele, even in such difficult times. There were moments that Michele needed encouraging words from Sheila, words that reminded Michele of how much she was accomplishing and how valuable she was. At these times, Michele would hold the cross in her hand, just as Sheila had done before. 

Michele was very appreciative of her understanding supervisor and continued to take care of her parents. She kept up with her online research late at night, always meeting the deadlines. Michele performed so well during her OJT, that The Able Trust was able to add her to their team…permanently.  Michele works on database organization and additional research projects to help The Able Trust meet its organizational goals. The good news doesn’t stop there. Michele’s family has found a new place to live, her mom is better, and her dad is showing positive results from his treatments.  

Through this experience with The Able Trust and employU, Michele found renewed strength within herself and a career that is a perfect match for her skillset and passions. “employU strives to identify the gifts and talents of their clients and uncover the needs of community employers. Through the development of these relationships, employU is able to make excellent skills matches between employers and clients,” explains Sheila. Our Employment Specialists also know that trust is the foundation of success in the client’s journey, which is why they always seek to build that foundation and connection as they work with each unique individual. We are proud of Michele for achieving her goals and look forward to seeing what she will accomplish. For more information on our adult employment services visit