Excerpt From Making Healthy Choices Workbook
The Making Healthy Choices Class is a wonderful and amazing personal development adventure. The wisdom students have gained here is not available in too many places. These classes are not usually taught in schools. Education and coaching of this type can be very expensive in the corporate world. This class can and has changed students’ lives. Since its inception, this class has proven an 80% participation rate.
The Making Healthy Choices Program is the beginning of a wonderful new opportunity. Whatever the background or the circumstances of the student, they definitely have found that this program gives them more power and freedom in creating the life they want to have for themselves and their families. Their future is wide open; all kinds of possibilities are ahead for them. The greatest thing a student can do for themselves is to learn everything they can about winning in life. That’s what this course teaches, how to win at life. A student has everything they need, they are smart enough, they have the energy, they have the time, and they already know a lot. This is when we take them to the next level.
The Goals of the Making Healthy Choices Program
The top ten goals that this program has offered an individual:
- Personal Power – Individuals have improved in their ability to make their life happen, to get things done, to take control of their situation and in creating the lives they want.
- Freedom – Individuals have the chance to free themselves of past burdens and constraints, free to be themselves, and free to choose the life they want for themselves and their families.
- Expressing Themselves – Individuals have vastly improved in their ability to speak up for themselves, to be heard, and to use their words to make good things happen.
- Earning a Living – Individuals have learned skills to improve their abilities to find a job, keep a job, and to succeed in their chosen field of work.
- Getting Along With People – Participants have improved their relationship skills with the people in their lives who matter, their family, friends and co-workers.
- Health and Well-Being – Participants have learned to take better care of themselves and their families so that they can be healthier, feel better and have more energy.
- Managing Stress – Participants have learned to better manage hard times, upsets, set backs, fears and frustrations with more grace, ease, and understanding.
- Confidence and Self-Esteem – Participants have upgraded and improved their sense of who they are, appreciation of their strengths and their ideas of what is possible for them in their lives.
- Happiness and Satisfaction in Their Lives – Participants have become happier people, more satisfied, more optimistic, enjoying their lives more as they take on the challenges of the future.
- Loving Their Lives – Individuals have the opportunity to turn the moments that are their life into ones that they love, with an appreciation and enjoyment of playing the game.
There are many other places an individual might be and many other things they could be doing other than being in this program. Many people take part in a program such as this because they are required or “forced” to participate. This is a tough way to begin this program. No one likes to be forced to take a class. Some of these individuals may have taken similar classes in the past and might feel that they do not need another one. Whether they are in the Making Healthy Choices Class by choice or are required to attend, they still can choose to get everything they can from the program.
Recommendations For Getting The Most From the Making Healthy Choices Program
Of all the many ways a person can do this program, we have found the best way to get the most out of the program and for participants to have the best time is for them to choose for themselves to be in the class for them and for their future. Where a person comes from will be the most important factor in how much they get from this program. They can come from, “I don’t want to” or “ I already know all this” and they may receive very little compared to the person sitting next to them. The best place to come from is being hungry for the information, ideas, and coaching available here. Other great places to come from include being determined to get everything they can from every class, being appreciative of the value of the instructors and the workbook, and committed to putting the course to good use in their lives.
Recommended Guidelines for Students Participating in the Program
- Attend every session from start to finish.
- Be on time for the start of every session as well as back from breaks and lunch. Treat the classes as if they are on a job.
- Participate fully in the discussions and sharing that the program raises.
- Do not engage in side conversations or other behaviors that either distract them or others from getting the program.
- Do all assigned readings, exercises, and homework as completely and fully as they can.
- Respect the privacy and feelings of every other person in the group, no gossiping or disrespecting any person in the program. They need to make this a safe space for all that are in the class.
- Create as much value as they can for themselves from every session. Use what they learn.
- Have fun. This program is meant to be educational and enjoyable, it’s up to the individual.
All participants of the Making Healthy Choices Program are asked to create a one-minute video resume of themselves for the purpose of posting on the CampusJobXpress website for employers to view. This one-minute video allows for the participant to speak on their own behalf. They talk a little about themselves and a lot about what they can do and what qualifications and experience they have behind them. The video resume is a small part of this class, however, the students feel that it is a major accomplishment for them.
This video is posted on their personal web page on CampusJobXpress.com. Employers can be directed to view their video resume when they apply for jobs or when they are in an interview with a company. Employers are provided with a special sign-in code for them to access the applicant’s resume, summary of qualifications as well as the video resume. This has proven to be a beneficial tool for the employer. It allows the employer a chance to not only view an applicant’s resume in print, but also, to view the actual applicant speaking to them about their background and qualifications. The employer is able to see the personality of the person he is trying to hire, before he hires them. It also saves the employer time and money. It allows the applicant to make themselves more visible to more employers. Everyone wins! △
By Silvia Seelig
Life is filled with choices … whether it’s about our personal life or our job … we find ourselves making decisions that impact our future. On a daily basis, we make choices that dictate the life we live and at other times, extenuating circumstances find us in situations that we never imagined finding ourselves in. Whether it’s losing our job due to cutbacks, re-entering the job market after being unemployed for a period of time, going through medical problems, dealing with a divorce, having too many bills, not enough money or any other life changing event, our self-esteem and self-worth take a huge hit. We can either allow these events to become a problem or we can look at these circumstances as an opportunity to re-invent ourselves and empower ourselves for a better life. The choice is ours to make.
We need to turn our negative situations into positive ones and embracing that change can really be the turning point our life needs. We should use these circumstances as the ideal time to reach within ourselves to become the person we want to be. We all have inner powers that, with practice and repetition, can be effective in allowing us to have a more peaceful and happy life.
The first of the inner powers is our sense of “I can.” A “can do” attitude is based upon our expectations of how well we handle things as they come up in life. Our general sense of “I can” is our overall confidence. The best way to build up our confidence is to take on more things in our life that challenge us and teach us. Learning from both our successes and failures will allow our personal power to expand rapidly and easily.
Flexibility and Adaptability
The second internal power is our ability to accept things as they come. Life is always changing and being able to manage change with grace and ease will allow us to see that as some doors close … others open. Many of us can get stuck in our ways and in our thinking so keeping a flexible and adaptable attitude will allow us to make the best out of any situation.
The third internal power is having the capacity to take action. Taking action is the single most powerful way to counteract stress. Our capacity to take action comes from taking responsibility for our situation and doing whatever needs to be done. The power to act is in our hands. We need to figure out what needs to be done and prioritize our actions.
The fourth of our inner powers is the relationship we have with ourselves. We must feel worthy and deserving of having a great life in order for us to take the steps necessary to make it happen. While our self-esteem is mostly developed in childhood, there is a lot we can do to improve our feelings about ourselves now. Every time we act consistent with whom we create ourselves to be, the prouder we become of who we are. The higher our self-esteem, the more we are able to handle upsets, disappointments, and frustrations. The higher our self-esteem, the more likely we are able to put ourselves in situations where we will learn and grow. A person who takes risks and can handle setbacks is a person who will succeed.
The fifth inner power is our ability to speak up for ourselves. Our ability to speak for ourselves is the key to convincing others that we are able, willing, and responsible to do the job. We must let the people in our world know what we are up to and how they can help us. We can’t expect others to read our minds so we must learn to ask people for help and vocalize our needs.
These empowering tools are used to assist individuals enrolled in the Choices Program through Workforce Solutions-Alamo Rural and CampusJobXpress. These individuals are facing life changing circumstances and have reached out for help in preparing themselves for a better future. Many of these individuals are facing situations that find them with low self-esteem and unsure of what direction their lives need to take moving forward. The one inner power they have used is speaking up for themselves and reaching out to programs, such as this one, to help them reach their full potential, despite the negative situations taking place.
Through the Choices Program, participants are assigned to a CampusJobXpress Employment Specialist to assist them in gaining employment and establishing themselves in their new workplace, as well as, offering one-on-one direction in all aspects of their lives. The Choices Program recognizes that everything they face in their day-to-day life affects how they carry themselves and how it influences their self-esteem and self-worth.
Individuals who are enrolled in the Choices Program attend a one-week class that allows them to bond with the Employment Specialist and cover many areas that will help them be more successful. The Employment Specialist is able to spend time with the participants to discover their needs and together, they outline a course of action to help them become employed and productive in their future. Career goals are discussed and plans for pursuing those goals are outlined. The ultimate goal for the program is to assist the participants obtain and maintain employment that will provide them with a stable life.
Through CampusJobXpress, participants are offered the assistance of the Employment Specialist for a specific period. During this time, the Employment Specialist will have daily contact with these participants and will address issues and concerns that arise acting as a liaison between them and their Workforce Case Manager. The Employment Specialist will also maintain a relationship with their employer to ensure that their supervisor is happy with their job performance and to ensure continued employment. Participants receive daily text messages with important information pertaining to their situation, motivational and encouraging words, and reminders of upcoming deadlines and/or appointments they have to meet. Program participants are given employment leads and are registered in a job club through CampusJobXpress which provides resume services, job leads, interactive conversations with other participants, online books to read, skill enhancement articles, and many more tools.
Like the participants in the Choices Program who are able to take negative circumstances and convert them into opportunities that will provide stability in their future, you too can empower yourself. By using the inner power tools of the “can do” attitude, adapting to circumstances, taking action in your own situation, strengthening your self-esteem, and speaking up for yourself, you can empower yourself to reach your goals. The choice is yours to make. △
By Melvin Collins, Jr.
CampusJobXpress (CJX) presents itself as a useful tool to Business/Employment Services programs with its personalized offerings.
Through CJX, business services teams are able to use the latest technology for applicants with posting of resumes, video resumes, and a video chat room. A detailed posting of an employer’s profile is also possible, with complete history of company, benefits and other employee-related information. Employers are offered a platform to present their company’s full story and best qualities, thus informing applicants of their best attributes. Employers are also give the opportunity to provide CJX with a hyperlink connecting applicants directly to their website.
With the assistance of CJX, the business services team is able to supply each employer with pre-screened applicants meeting the employer’s specifications. For all employers who are able to use this service (some employers may have restrictions per government regulations), an applicant can be visually assessed for appropriateness of specific employment opportunities from the comfort of their offices via their computer 24/7. This provides a visual for employers to best select the most qualified candidates. They are able to connect with applicants through an online video chat room at their convenience and pleasure.
A web page is created for each applicant which consists of a photo, summary of qualifications, a full resume and a one-minute video. For employers, this practice makes for a better selection as well as better serving its customers with a convenient, rapid responsive tool saving time and expense.
CampusJobXpress, along with the business service team, strive to make the interviewing and hiring process as smooth and seamless as possible. △
By C’Mone Collins
There are many steps in the process of getting a job, but the hardest part, in my opinion, would be the assessments. What are assessments, you ask? And why are they important?
An assessment is a tool that employers use to measure an applicant’s knowledge, skills and abilities, as well as personal traits and/or characteristics. It tells the employer your level of functionality, how you would handle certain situations and what type of reasoning you would utilize to make decisions. These assessments are used by the employer to screen job candidates for suitability for a particular job. The reason these assessments should be important to you is because it could “make or break” your chances of getting the job you really want.
I am 18 years old and as soon as I graduated from high school, I was on the hunt for a job. I applied at the nearby mall, fast food restaurants, clothing stores and many more. You name it, I probably applied there. None of them responded to me, except one. So I went in to meet the manager and he set me up to take an assessment. I thought, “No problem.” I felt that I was well prepared, however, the results told otherwise. I failed the assessment miserably, and I didn’t know why. I attended a Job-Readiness Class entitled “Making Healthy Choices” and the topic of assessments came up.
The most important thing about assessments is how you take it. In other words, an assessment typically has 4 or 5 choices:
As I said above, employers utilize assessments to see if you would be a good fit for their company. As you see above, the choices are: Strongly Agree, Agree, Neither Agree Nor Disagree, Disagree, and Strongly Disagree.
The thing that most people don’t realize, including myself, is that employers want you to have a strong opinion, one way or the other. So the answers that are AUTOMATICALLY incorrect are “Agree and Disagree” as well as “Neither Agree Nor Disagree.”
While applying for my job, I had to take their assessment about four times. I’m grateful that I had a connection to the manager, because he allowed me the opportunity to re-do it. Many people aren’t that lucky. However, the more I took the assessments, the more I noticed the difficulty and types of questions they used. There were tons of trick questions, but there were even more that were basically the same questions; the words were just re-arranged or it was a different scenario.
So my advice to you when taking an employment assessment is to read the questions CAREFULLY, and then, go on your instinct. Typically, your first answer is always the correct one, so try not to think too hard about it. But remember, have a strong opinion, either it is going to be very wrong or it is going to be very right. Try to stay out of the middle. △
The Workforce Connection: Workforce Solutions-Alamo (Rural) and Campusjobxpress Make The Difference
By Melvin Collins, Jr.
It began in Waco with the Workforce Solutions For The Heart Of Texas (WSHOT) and it matured with and through the cooperation of Workforce Solutions-Alamo (Rural) (WSA). CampusJobXpress (CJX), a division of Workforce Partners Management Group, LLC (WPMG) has developed a Transition and Job-Readiness Program, which teaches its students that everything that happens to them is under their control. It is centered in the way they think, believe, and carry out their lives. Also, developed in WSA is a monitoring program tracking Choices and Snap participants through their successful completion of their work assignment, The JumpStart Program.
Presented to Workforce Solutions Heart Of Texas, the job-readiness program worked with UI Participants to help them gain employment within 10 weeks of their receiving benefits. The program enrolled participants in the CJX online service, coupled with classroom service delivered directly in the Waco New Road Workforce Center. Participants, once enrolled, received resumes, interviewing instruction, critiquing of appearance, and some video taping of themselves conducting an interview presentation.
A job club was formed with attendance exceeding the seating capacity at the New Road Workforce Center. This caused the CJX Staff to develop an online job club with all participants sharing job opportunities and receiving detailed information on job search topics and issues. The job club became a roaring success. New subjects were introduced every Wednesday with articles discussing dress, interviewing techniques, tattoos, the latest resume instructions and much, much more. Employment leads from CJX Staff were uploaded regularly with follow-up information also being sent through Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. The job club membership grew to over 1,400 participants.
In Waco, CJX was responsible for recruiting, orientation, job events, resume construction as well as classes.
In March, 2013, the program was moved to Workforce Solutions-Alamo (Rural) where the services were expanded to serve UI, WIA, Choices, SNAP and some Universal Customers. The customers, on the first day, seemed angry about having to attend yet another job search/job-readiness class. “We have done this already,” was one of the typical comments. Then the class began with the discussion being about how each participant was and is responsible for what has happened to them and what will happen to them in the future. It is as simple as the way one thinks and feels. It is as simple as science. Quantum Mechanics is, then, explained. It is explained through mathematics.
A proposed explanation of how things may work through science in helping to create what happens to us is presented. Through math, it is demonstrated that through a positive, one gets a positive. Going through life with a negative attitude and a pessimistic view of life, will bring your future only one result, a negative. By noon of that same first day, participants are now saying, “This is not what we expected. This is making us think and re-examine our lives and way of thinking.” Others go home and come back, saying, “I talked over with my family what happened in class today and now I have questions and want to hear more.” And CJX/WPMG gives them more.
Throughout the rest of the week, resumes are completed, interviewing and finances are discussed and assessments are done. Each participant is given two assessments, the General Assessment and the Work-Ready Assessment, both developed by WPMG. It is carefully explained how these tools are used by employers and their importance. A graph of each individual’s participation is developed on a chart which shows each person’s progress throughout the program.
Each class has a highly anticipated visit from the Business Services Staff to discuss, in detail, each participant’s needs and goals for employment. There is a sense of excitement when participants are told that the Business Services Team is coming. They are prepared with questions and goals to discuss in detail. This is done with the completion of the Business Services Request for Information form that is given to each participant at the beginning of the week. Business Services stays until every question is answered and each participant is satisfied with the appropriate responses.
The video taping which in itself, is a video resume is done for each member of each class in any way or form that they feel comfortable. The video resume presents the participant as they really are. Employers see and feel who they may want to interview. This offers more introspective than the resume by itself. When all video resumes are completed, a personal web page is developed and posted on CJX website for the convenience of Business Services Staff and employers to view at their discretion. These pages are not for public view and can only be accessed through CJX portal with an assigned password and login.
This highly successful program is achieving a participation rate in excess of 80% to date. Participants are now referring other individuals to the program and San Antonio Rural Staff now get requests regularly from customers to attend these four-day sessions.
For more information on the JumpStart Program which in itself, is achieving great success, please refer to the article entitled “The Services.”
These programs have begun to make an impact on very successful terminations and placements. Employers throughout the area are now beginning to say that they are noticing the difference in the caliber of referrals being made by the Business Services Staff.
CJX has developed and is further developing services that can be delivered anywhere in the country through its online vehicle. Another service of CJX is pre-screening and referral of applicants to employers per their employment specifications. This is enhanced through the Video Chat Room allowing employers and applicants to meet online. For more information, contact CJX at firstname.lastname@example.org. △