Success Stories: Turning Dreams Into Reality

While best practices help businesses achieve greater goals, they often fulfill a higher purpose: helping people become more successful. Our workforce board members are proud to have helped play even a small role in helping make dreams come true for so many people from North Carolina. These are the best of best practices.


Moore County Success Story

“WIOA DW—OJT Training”Bradford Carfaro is a Moore County resident, married with a family of six. He is also an Army Veteran who served in the Infantry and Armor Crew with a tour in Kuwait/Iraq. He has earned several decorations, medals and awards to include: Army Commendation Medal; Army Good Conduct Medal; National Defense Service Medal; Global War on Terrorism Service Medal with Campaign Star; Army Service Ribbon,  Armed Forces Reserve Medal  and Combat Action Badge.
Bradford came into the NCWorks Career Center after losing his job as a Cashier for a local Convenience store. Upon being unemployed, Bradford began applying for various jobs but was not hired.   After months with no success in finding a job, he determined that additional education and new job skills were needed to make him more employable in the workplace with wages that would support his family financially.While in the Career Center he applied for the WIOA program and met with a Career Advisor to discuss his plans. They discussed the possibility of him being an OJT (On-the-Job-Training) candidate. Utilizing the skill gaps identified from the assessment tools used in the Career Center and the employer’s job description, needs, and the OJT candidates’ past work experience a training plan was developed. Due to Bradford’s primary gap in the specific industry of being a Coating Technician and limited knowledge of the industry as a whole, it was determined he would need training in all areas as it pertains to Thermal Metal Treating Inc. to include learning maintenance on machinery and its process from start to finish. It was determined that he would be a good match for the OJT program with a local company, Thermal Metals Treating Inc. They were in need of a good hard worker with some background in metal coating and Quality control. Bradford and his Career Advisor met with company officials and discussed Bradford being an OJT candidate for them. They liked Bradford and decided he would be a good match and could learn the trade. Bradford was enrolled into the WIOA program and began his OJT training with Thermal Metals Treating INC as a Coating/Quality Control Technician.  WIOA provided a 50% wage reimbursement to the employer for his training.Since the beginning of his training, Bradford has been working and learning something new every day.  During the Midpoint evaluations Thermal Metal Treating Supervisor states he is meeting all skills/learning objectives satisfactorily and how to identify the process of maximize load size for maximum output.When the OJT program ended, Bradford was hired full time with Thermal Metal Treating INC and will continue to learn this trade and be a valuable asset to the company.Bradford states that this couldn’t have happened without the guidance and help of the WIOA staff “steering him in the OJT direction with a great company that he can make this a career not just a job”.
Submitted By: Jerry McQueen, WIOA Career Advisor

Moore County Success Story
“WIOA Adult Program”  Mahogony Williams came into the NCWorks Career Center seeking employment and training.  She is a single mother with two children and had been facing many of life’s challenges and financial barriers.  Mahogony stated she honestly thought she had to give up her hope of obtaining a college degree and finding meaningful employment following job interview after interview.  Mahogony met with WIOA Staff and was determined eligible for the WIOA Adult Program and subsequently enrolled in training at Sandhills Community College.  WIOA Staff assisted her with the cost of Tuition, Books and Supplies to minimize her barrier to education.  With her commitment to academic educational training, Mahogony made the Dean’s List four (4) semesters in a row, President’s List (1) semester and was inducted into the distinguished Phi Theta Kappa Academic Honor Society.  In addition she was selected to be a part of the prestigious Giles Student Leadership Academy at Sandhills Community College— (Each academic department, continuing education division, Student Government Association and athletics department, identifies potential student leaders in their student ranks).  Each student selected takes on a role of understanding the obligation and responsibility to pursue a leadership role in life.Mahogony graduated May 13, 2017, with an Associate in Applied Science, Human Service with Substance Abuse Concentration.  She was honored for being in the top 1% of the current student body.  Additionally, she has worked part time with Family Promise of Moore County as Evening Manager.  Mahogony stated that “WIOA Staff made me believe again, that people do care and my vision and goals do matter.   I now have greater confidence in obtaining employment and training in my field of study”.Mahogony began working full time as a Career Advisor Assistant in the Pre-Employment Transitional Services Program, September 6, 2017 in Moore County. Duties include assisting eligible students with disabilities with Pre-Employment transitioning services, Richmond Community Support Center.
Submitted by:  Jerry McQueen, WIOA Career Advisor


Alamance County (RCSC) Success Story
“WIOA Adult DW Program”
Chad Brown came to the NCWorks Career Center as a Dislocated Worker whose position with Southland Electrical Supply was eliminated in February 2014.  Chad’s desire was to become a Barber.  He had already visited Alamance Barber Institute and talked to some Barbershops in the area.  Labor Market Information indicated some growth in our area and other barbers’ indication that he would be able to secure employment in a local shop encouraged Chad.
Chad had multiple goals with his expressed interest in the WIOA program.  Not only did he want to care for his family (he is married with a two year old son); at the same time he wanted to be able to be in a position to give back to his community. He wanted to be in a job where he could not only make people look nice, but “as a brother, and a friend, he would be in a place to listen and offer encouragement on a deeper level”. In coming to know Chad, through the last year or so, he is a very sincere person of strong faith and has met these goals.  Chad successfully completed his Barber training on 7/13/2017 and obtained employment with Crazi Cuts on 8/14/2017, as a Barber apprentice.  Chad’s next phase in his career is to complete Barber Instructor training.Chad wants to thank WIOA for all the assistance he has received, and Kathy Wilkinson and Tammy Wall for all their help in giving him the motivation to go forward with his dream.  Chad stated he also knows there are people who take our services for granted but he is very grateful for everything WIOA has done for him.
Submitted by: Kathy Wilkinson, Career Advisor – Alamance County NCWorks


Randolph County Testimonial and Success Story
“WIOA Adult Program”
Rebecca (Becky) Ann Spoonamore I was a young mother at the age of 17 that dropped out of high school my second semester of my senior year. I did however go to RCC (Randolph Community College) and earn my GED. (GOAL 1 ACHIEVED) I had all 4 of my beautiful girls by the age 21. I worked mostly mill jobs the 10 years I was married to my kids’ father. We divorced and I decided I needed to further my education.(Working on Goal 2) I completed 1 year and had to “take a break” considering raising 4 daughters on my own…I needed to work more THAN full time. I knew I had to finish my education and I was given that opportunity August of 2015. I was so excited 1 year to go nothing was going to stop me from getting my AAS in MOA (Medical Office Administration).September 17th 2015 I was hit with some devastating news and had brain surgery. February 2016 I lost my job due to cutbacks. May 2016 Spring Semester was ending, ALL my FAFSA was used up, the little amount I was receiving in unemployment was ending in just a few weeks. All I had left was Summer Semester (2 MONTHS) left to be able to receive my AAS. I had no source of income to pay for it.I had to go in for my unemployment interview in May… I was asked the usual questions and of course one of my responses was that I’m so close to finishing school and achieving my Second Goal in life but I don’t have the funds to finish (I’m devastated…so close) but let me tell you within minutes my life changed. The interviewer introduced me to Gail Bailey, she became my case manager for the WIOA program that paid my training for the summer classes. She just doesn’t know how much I truly appreciate her. July 2016 I received my AAS in MOA (2nd GOAL ACHIEVED).November 7, 2016 I became a Young Adult Case Manager for the same program that helped me. Ahhhhh…Career Job (3rd GOAL ACHIEVED). BUT…..There is that 1 last Goal….you see today is an awesome day. I have proven to myself that you can achieve anything in life if you set your mind to do it. Life is good. The glass is always half full. Always surround yourself with positive and positive will shine. I have been approved and will be participating in building my own home! (Last Goal ACHIEVED)I can finally say I am very proud of myself! And yes I may have done it completely backwards but One thing my Daddy taught me in life was to NEVER give up and always push yourself to achieve your goals in life and become something of yourself.…….Becky Ann Spoonamore

Alamance County Success Story
 “WIOA Adult Program” Flada Santiago is a native of New Jersey who worked her way through the ranks of Rite Aid to become store manager.  She later became a Dislocated Worker after some stores were closed.   She began working at Ashley Furniture in NJ and worked in a management position there.  Family matters brought her to NC and there were no vacancies at Ashley Furniture for her to transfer to.  While visiting Alamance County Social Services, she learned of the training and career services through the NCWorks Career Center and the WIOA program.Flada was having difficulty finding a management position as she had no post-secondary education.  After working with career center staff, reviewing Labor Market Information and completing career interests assessments, she decided a degree in Business Administration would benefit her based on her most recent positions in management.In July, 2017, Flada completed all coursework and received her Associate’s Degree in Business Administration at Alamance Community College.  In August, 2017, she secured full time employment with LabCorp as a Customer Service Specialist.  She is very happy with her current position and feels she is finally in control again of her life and financially able to support herself and family.Flada is very appreciative of the assistance she received from the NC Works Career Center and the WIOA program.  Coming from out of state and not knowing the area or the resources was very discouraging and scary.  Flada says without WIOA and the encouragement she received from her Career Advisor, Amber Currie and the career center staff, she is not sure she could have completed her training in the timeframe in which she did and secure employment she is proud of.Submitted by: Amber Currie, WIOA Career Advisor, Alamance NCWorks Career Center 


Randolph County Success Story
“WIOA Adult DW Program” Janette Martinez-Arroyo came to the Career Center seeking WIA assistance in April 2015 after the last company she worked for shutdown. This was her only source of income and she was desperate to turn her life around and seek a new career. Janette had started taking college classes right after high school but never finished her degree due to financial hardship.  She has always been interested in the medical field wanting to help people and wished to finish her training in the medical assisting field. Once Janette qualified for the WIA program and enrolled into the medical assisting program, she began to learn skills in the medical field and get hands on experience as a phlebotomist, EKG technician and in CPR. During Janette’s second year in the medical assisting program, she became pregnant but continued to put her best foot forward. She stayed dedicated to managing her time well for studying and practicing skills along with the complications of being pregnant. Janette had a lot of determination to do her absolute best in her classes. She graduated from Randolph Community College with 2 degrees in May 2017 and finished with a 3.363 grade point average. She feels that without the support of the WIOA program, she could not have made it this far. We congratulate Janette on fulfilling her golden success.Submitted by: Frances Ryan, WIOA Career Advisor