Newton County resident Vincent Lewandowski was named Georgia's Job Seeker of the Month for earning a job after completing Georgia's Work Ready Program, according to the Governor's office.
After 30 years of working as a one-man construction company, Lewandowski was hit hard by the construction industry slowdown. Because he had long wanted to work in health care, he went back to school to earn a nursing degree, but the economy soon made it necessary for him to go back to work.
"For eight months I searched everywhere for a job with no luck," Lewandowski said. "I turned to Georgia Work Ready almost as a last resort."
Georgia Work Ready program tests job seekers on various skills assessments, giving certificates to those workers who pass. The program serves as a job profiling system for businesses.
Lewandowski completed his assessment, earning a gold-level certificate, which, he said, boosted his morale and helped him land a job that uses both his construction background and his ability to think and reason. He is planning to improve his certificate to platinum level and looks forward to completing his nursing degree.
"Being unemployed was the most difficult thing I have faced. Georgia Work Ready helped me get through a tough time, regain a handle on things and get some new perspective," he said.
Each month, the state honors a worker who has received a job after completing the program. Featured Georgia Work Ready individuals will receive a $100 pre-paid incentive card in recognition of their hard work.