My start with HireAbility Vermont:
My experience with HireAbility Vermont has been absolutely unbelievable. It’s like, all of a sudden, all of these amazing people have gathered around me for support and everyone is just so patient and understanding and incredibly knowledgeable and generous. I feel like I’m on the path to a career that will be much more suited to me. With the help of HireAbility Vermont, I am reinstating my teaching license. I got a bachelor’s degree back in the early 90s, and then just all kinds of life things happened. I never actually had my own classroom beyond my student teaching. But [now with] just three classes, I’ll be able to reinstate my teaching license. My goal and dream is to have my own classroom.
I worked with [the Assistive Technology Program] and that’s really incredible. They have access to all kinds of equipment that you can try out to see if it’ll work for you. And it all kind of seems a little too good to be true—there’s money to help me with the equipment so that I can get set up ergonomically at home. One of my goals is that, [to allow] much of my work be done at home. They’re helping to revise my resume, which is looking amazing, and it’s amazing how much confidence is built in.
I’m embarrassed to say I have a disability. I don’t like saying it… I feel like I don’t deserve all this support. And what really brought tears to my eyes, and it still does right now, is when I told that to my counselor she said, “You know what, every single person I work with says that.” [Hearing that] breaks my heart.
What HireAbility Vermont means to me:
So, what does it mean to me? It’s empowering if they can do this, but to help me and have so many resources available, I can imagine that they are just truly transforming people’s lives and improving their quality of life. Just helping brings more happiness.
My advice for anyone who is thinking about connecting with HireAbility Vermont:
Life is hard enough, but if you’re having difficulty finding a good job simply because you’re unable to do certain things physically or mentally, I think that HireAbility Vermont gives freedom to people and help them to get their life back in a way. Don’t hesitate. This is a social service. It’s a net that’s been built in our society to, to support people with challenges, and I would say do not hesitate.
Everybody, who I’ve been in contact with has been so incredibly kind and respectful. And just encouraging. We’re all human. We’re all in this human family. If I can find the courage in myself, to just be proud of who I am and the way I am, to not feel bad about what I can’t do, [anyone can]. It’s so hard for people to ask for help. That’s something that I think many of us have in common. And it’s not a sign of weakness, it’s actually a sign of strength to be able to ask and accept help.