40 Stories for 40 Years – Profilee 13
In the spring of 2017, Jesse was considering enrolling in New Ventures Maine’s My Next Career Move class. As a UMA Rockland Center student, Jesse was familiar with online classes but had less familiarity with the in-person class experience. With encouragement from Melinda Wildes, NVME’s Workforce Specialist in Rockland, he decided to enroll.
Jesse shares, “I definitely enjoyed the class. I found that even for an introvert, it was not as scary to participate in a group as I’d feared. It was supportive and we were all in similar situations.” By the end of the class, Jesse had created a written plan to reach his personal, education, and career goals. He notes that the “barrier of living on an island” has posed a challenge for him in pursuing his goals. Having a clear plan makes that challenge less overwhelming.
As a result of completing the career class, Jesse received a GEN scholarship to support his educational pursuits at the University of Maine at Augusta. Jesse is now even more involved in the college experience at UMA. “My experience as a work-study student and tutor have helped me to gain confidence, and now I have also joined the Student Association,” Jesse shares.
Jesse says, “See what you are capable of and don’t be afraid to test your limits. At first, it was intimidating starting out in my 30’s. I was not sure I would be good at college. Now, I realize that I can do these things even though I was unsure before I tried them. I am so thankful there are organizations like NVME.”