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Civic Impact

Personal help and encouragement for job seekers coming at free Carnegie Library workshops

"We just see people every day who could use some real focused, one-on-one help with their application packages," says Rachel Masilamani about the many individuals seeking help with their job search at the downtown Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh branch, where she is reference librarian.
Unfortunately, she and her fellow librarians can't help everyone on the spot. But thanks to a new, free set of career-building workshops at seven different Carnegie library branches, job seekers can get the personal attention needed to build their skills. "There's no end to the value of having another set of eyes taking a look at your resume, at your cover letter," Masilamani says.
She and fellow librarian Georgiana Deming will help people identify a real job posting to target, devising application materials geared specifically to that job. They will also aid people by conducting mock interviews and developing their job-hunting strategies and networking skills.  
"The process of searching for jobs can be very isolating," Masilamani observes. Not only will these workshops provide access to computers and other resources, they are intended to help build participants' sense of community. "It's a big part of keeping positive and keeping you from being stuck in inertia in your job search," she says. "It's about putting the power of how we're being perceived in the job market into job searchers' hands."
Workshops run now through November 5 at the West End, Allegheny, Knoxville, Downtown, Mt. Washington, Brookline and Beechview branches and were funded by State Sen. Wayne D. Fontana.
Workshop space is limited, so registration is required: Call 412-281-7141, ext. 2012 or click here to reserve your spot. 

Writer: Marty Levine
Source: Rachel Masilamani, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh
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