Jonathan first heard about The Fortune Society’s services while still incarcerated and came for career assistance. During the Career Readiness workshop, Jonathan was able to expand upon his foundational tech knowledge with the help of the Grow with Google curriculum.
Grow with Google is a partnership between Google and five reentry organizations including Fortune, aiming to provide free digital literacy training to people with a history of justice involvement. In 2021, Grow with Google trained more than 10,000 people in fundamental digital skills. More than 80 percent of participants reported improvement in their digital skills and career readiness. The course is also coupled with job placement support so graduating participants can access quality jobs in their preferred fields.
Jonathan learned how to use Google Docs to improve his resume and tailor it to specific job requirements. He noted the ease of updating his resume using Google Docs and the convenience of saving his documents in Google Drive.
“I never thought that I would learn simple things about how to act in an interview,” Jonathan said. “How to know what your soft skills and your hard skills are; just the confidence of speaking to somebody else and letting them know that you are worth a job or position – not because of your bad decisions, but because you have a lot to give.”
Many participants have had some touchpoint with technology in their lives, making the transition home easier. However, for some the world of tech is all new to them, having never used a smartphone or computer before returning home.
Rainford has been involved with The Fortune Society for the past year. His recent completion of the Career Readiness workshop has sparked excitement in him as he looks forward to the promising chapters that lie ahead.
During the Career Readiness Course, Rainford gained invaluable skills, such as navigating the job application process, crafting an impressive resume using Google Docs and composing professional emails. Rainford underscored that the most priceless lesson he took away from the course was the ability to communicate effectively and productively.
Eddie signed up for the three-week course with a basic understanding of technology. He could navigate the apps on his smartphone, since he carries that with him everywhere, but he admitted that technology was not his strong suit. He wouldn’t consider himself to be “computer savvy.”
However, Eddie was thrilled to learn about the numerous user-friendly Google applications that he has now implemented in his daily life.
During the Career Readiness workshop, Eddie improved his resume using Google Docs and perfected his interviewing style with Zoom. He also set up a professional email account using Gmail and now has easy access to the important emails and notifications he receives. Eddie is preparing to start an internship with Building Maintenance at the end of September, and he is grateful to have gained invaluable skills that will help him succeed.
Eddie wants to continue learning as much as he can. “As long as they keep giving these classes, I’m going to keep taking them,” he said. “Everything is online now, and I need to be able to keep up as things change.”
To learn more about Fortune’s Grow with Google Career Readiness for Reentry program, click here.