Olive Zachowski had been on and off public assistance for about 3 years before joining Bridge To Tech. Her background was in theatrical carpentry and other odd jobs working with her hands, but when theatres closed due to the pandemic, she found it difficult to find employment. Olive came to Goodwill NYNJ on February 20, 2020. During the pandemic she stayed engaged with her follow up specialist and attending weekly Zoom workshops.
When the Goodwill Bridge to Tech program was introduced to her, she jumped at the opportunity. Since early age, Olive had always wanted to work in the IT sector. She found it difficult to break into the field prior due to challenges of being eligible for programs and/or having the time. Olive had some prior technology knowledge through volunteer work with groups that did tech education for activist. She enjoyed working with her hands and doing technical work with machines and systems and wanted to expand on that by obtaining the necessary certifications to begin her career in IT.
Olive was accepted into the Bridge to Tech program on February 22, 2021. Attending classes at Goodwill heled her reading and math score jump to 12.9 and graduated Bridge on March 26, 2021. Once in the advance training with Per Scholas Olive was able to excel in the program due to her prior tech knowledge and was named valedictorian. She successfully obtained her Google IT Support certification on May 12, 2021 and her CompTIA A+ certification on June 15, 2021.
Olive began working full-time as an IT Support technician at Legal Services on July 6, 21 earning $18/hr. She continues to receive supportive services from the Bridge team and retention benefits of metro cards.
Bridge to Technology equips individuals enrolled in New York City’s Human Resources Administration city-wide Career Services programs with the necessary skills to qualify for and graduate from advanced technology training programs and obtain on-demand tech jobs.
Story submitted by:
Tanisha Lesane, Bridge To Technology Program Manager