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Candy Nolte


Candy Nolte, program coordinator at JOIN (Job Opportunities In Nevada), helps people tailor their skills and resume to today’s job market. Find her and others who can help at the JOIN offices at 1201 Terminal Way, Suite 102 in Reno, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, 336-4450. JOIN also has offices in Ely, Winnemucca, Fallon, Fernley, Carson City and Elko.

Tell me about JOIN. How do you help people find jobs?

JOIN’s been around for about 28 years now. We try to help people update their job search skills as well as provide an avenue to short-term training. Say you’ve worked in construction for many years or you’re an HVAC person, and all of the sudden those jobs have gone bye bye. You still have job skills. We can offer resume writing workshops, application, job searching, interviewing and how to create a 30-second “Me,” where you’re selling yourself. When someone says, “Tell me about yourself,” they don’t want to know you have five kids and a mortgage, they want to know what skills you have for the job. A 30-second Me could be “I worked for United Blood Services, supervised 28 people, raised over $200,000 for in-kind donations and worked with the media.”

That’s good. You’re hired.

Or let’s say you’re a surveyor, and you need a certificate to make you more employable. We would help fund that for you. Definitely on a case by case basis, we have to follow our federal guidelines. But we bring humanity into it. We see how you fit and how it will help you. You don’t want to give people training and hope when there are no jobs. … Like, to be honest, you’re sitting there typing away, but I probably wouldn’t suggest someone get a job in journalism; that’s not a growing field. But I would say, “Have you thought about something in the health care industry?” Maybe it’s to become a CNA [certified nurse assistant], or maybe you need to go to TMCC and talk about getting an RN. What steps can we help you with on the way? How we can get you a job while you’re going to school?

That’s one part of JOIN. Another part is PRONET—a members-run networking group we sponsor because most professionals don’t get their next job through the newspaper or internet. They get it by networking, talking to others in the industry, through word of mouth. We do a week’s worth of trainings that go over all the things I mentioned before, but we increase their brag time to a 60-second Me. And we teach them negotiations—how do you negotiate your salary, your benefits, even your time off. We’ve had geologists, IT people, medical doctors, teachers. So it’s a little different group, where we offer the same services but to a more upscale group.

Is any kind of field lucrative now?

The health care industry is still pretty good. We’ll see a bunch of jobs, and then it will taper off for a while, then we’ll see a bunch more jobs come in. We’re getting people to look at a set of skills and change their direction. If you were a realtor or land developer, there’s not much out there, but those same skills can transfer into other jobs in the community. Some nonprofits are starting to hire. We expect the state will start hiring soon now; even though the budget isn’t that great, they’re still going to have to hire for certain positions. There’s still a lot of opportunity for people with computer skills. If you’re looking for an administrative assistant, those jobs are still there. But everyone has to remember, they’re competing now: At one time you would have had 10 applications for one position, but there may be 100 applications for that position now.

If you’re not getting job interviews and you’re applying, then maybe it’s your resume, and you need to rethink your resume. If you are getting the interview and you’re not getting the job, we need to bring you in and do another panel mock interview with you, because maybe that’s where you need help.

Is there a cost?

No. We are funded by Workforce Investment Act, so everything we do is free.