Jongsoo Gets a Job!

August 22, 2011 at 2:45 PM | Posted in ESOL, Favorite, Staff, Student Stories, Tutoring | Leave a comment
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Our tutors are doing great work everyday, working toward their student’s goals.  Through quarterly reports and correspondence, sometimes we get to share their joy.  Please read below to share tutor, Marla Diamond’s, story about her students Jinsuk and Jongsoo:

“Jinsuk, Jongsoo’s wife, exploded with the news!  She was so excited when we spoke she could hardly speak.  Yet, she knew she was spoiling Jongsoo’s surprise of telling me first.  But who can blame her?  This has been a several-year quest.  We’re all so proud and thrilled!

Jongsoo Lim, an LCNV student for the past two years, recently got a job as an electrician with Metro.  This is an extraordinary accomplishment for him.  He was trained as an electrician in Korea, and was able to pass the exam in the U.S. to get licensed as a Master Electrician. Yet he has struggled to find full-time employment, in part because of his limited English comprehension and conversational skills which hampers his success at job interviews.  And, he has had difficulty learning electronics which has hindered him in passing exams that some employers, including Metro, require as a prerequisite to employment.

Nonetheless, Jongsoo was not to be deterred.  He has spent most of his time since arriving in the U.S. four years ago studying English and trying to learn electronics on his own.  All the while applying for whatever jobs he could find to apply his skills as an electrician.  But, he also needed to support a family.  So, he took part-time jobs (often several at the same time) regardless of whether his skills were required, to earn whatever he could.

In the two years we have studied together, Jongsoo has maintained a sense of humor and optimism that is to be respected and admired.  He felt sure that one day his efforts would reward him and he was right!  After three prior unsuccessful attempts to pass the exam with Metro, he finally passed.  That, however, did not lead to an immediate job offer.  He had to pass a practical exam, be interviewed, and fare well through reference checks; all of which generated significant anxiety for him and his family as getting this job was so critical.  In the end, Jongsoo succeeded and he began his new job in mid-June.

His job with Metro is important in so many ways.  He has a steady income and benefits that none of his part-time positions provided.  His confidence in himself has soared.  He has opportunities for promotion.  Jongsoo is already looking forward to being able to take his family back to Korea next year.  This will be their first visit since arriving in the U.S. in 2007.  Notwithstanding the sacrifices Jongsoo made to get to this point, he had to endure yet one more during his first week on the job – he missed his son’s graduation from high school.  Yet, he remains proud and happy and eager to do well and be an outstanding employee.  His American dream fulfilled. “

If you have a student success or challenge to share, please contact our program staff or comment below!

-Marla Diamond, ESLT Tutor

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