Dept. of Employment and Workforce Offers Free Workshops

6:00 PM, Jul 20, 2010   |    comments
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DEW Workshop Attendees

Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- The Department of Employment and Workforce offers free workshops to people across the Midlands.

Those in attendance represent all ages, all backgrounds, and all levels of education.  They have one thing in common: they have come to a workshop at the Columbia One Stop while seeking a job in the healthcare industry.

"We have people coming from all avenues to participate in these classes," said Gregory Eason, a business liaison with the Midlands Workforce Development Board. Eason says the workshops are almost always full of people wanting to get questions answered or brush up on skills.

Classes are offered in computer programs like Word or PowerPoint. Skills in resume writing and interviewing are also taught. One class offers help to get a criminal record expunged.  The class on this day is to answer questions about jobs in healthcare.

Joann Freeman is one of those in attendance and she has been seeking work in healthcare for a while.

"It's been right at a year now," she said.  Freeman is in a work incentive program and she is trying to get trained.  She has dreams of owning her own business, and has felt that the added security of an extra job would come from the healthcare industry.

"With the medical stuff, my thinking on that was that's always something that's going to be open and needed so if by chance I wanted to go to work, for a moment, then I would have the training there to do that," Freeman said. The workshop left her with more questions than answers, she said.

"I came today looking for information on what's available that I did not already know," said Freeman.

Eason said many of those in attendance find useful information. 

"There are a lot of folks out there that are searching, a lot of folks out there with advanced degrees and then there are the folks that had the skills, they just don't know how to put it down on paper," he said. To learn more about the classes offered through Midlands Workforce Development, visit

South Carolina's largest industry is tourism and that was the greatest job gain in June. Leisure and Hospitality jobs rose by 6200, just in time for the summer vacation season.

sure and Hospitality jobs rose by 6200, just in time for the summer vacation season.

Construction and Manufacturing also gained numbers in the Palmetto State. The largest loss in jobs came from the government, at more than 10,000.

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