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Upwardly Global

Changing Work: From Career Path to Survival Job

PUBLISHED: Sep 13, 2020

Mary Therese is an Employment Services Associate at Upwardly Global, a Tipping Point grantee that helps immigrants and refugees succeed in professional careers. We spoke with her about how COVID-19 is impacting Upwardly Global’s job seekers, most of whom are unemployed or under-employed now that they’re here in the U.S., and aiming to return to their field of expertise:

“One of our jobseekers is a 31-year-old IT specialist from Brazil. He is highly skilled with seven years of experience, but since moving here, has only managed to find work as a waiter. For the past five months, we have been working together to find him a job that would allow him to continue his IT career. A few weeks ago, we had a breakthrough. He made it to the final round interview at a tech consulting company in San Francisco.
Now, that company is on a hiring freeze and his restaurant has closed. I have gone from helping him find a job with long-term opportunity to helping him find a job to survive.”

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  • READ: How social distancing is a privilege.
  • SHARE: Governor Newsom launches website to connect employees with emergency resources, career connections, and potential employers.

1.9 MILLION Californians have applied for unemployment benefits since March 12. Source.

14,000 businesses have been affected by San Francisco’s stay-at-home order. During March, the City received 77 notices of businesses laying off workers—5,676 employees in total. Source.

HALF A MILLION people work in Bay Area restaurants, stores, and venues that have been required to shut down or drastically scale back operations. Source.



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