WSU and Eagle offer Project Springboard for unemployed
1:47:56 PM CDT - Tuesday, December 09, 2003
By Tammy Allen
Unemployed, laid-off, "underemployed" workers and those interested in changing jobs can receive a boost for their career this month and next through a new program called Project Springboard.
Created as a joint effort of The Wichita Eagle and WSU, the project offers a combination of scholarship dollars, help getting additional education, assistance in preparing for and finding another job, and a one-day event pulling together community resources to help unemployed workers.
"Every day, we run stories about people whose needs aren't being met and who need help," Eagle publisher Lou Heldman says. "A newspaper's strength is delivering useful, timely information. Project Springboard is a way to do that by letting people know they can get help within this community to improve their opportunities."
Ron Kopita, WSU vice president of student affairs, concurs: "WSU has so many resources that were created to help people change their lives in a positive way through education."
As part of the project, The Eagle will publish a special section in January called "I've Been Laid Off — What Should I Do?" Written by WSU sociology assistant professor Chuck Koeber and funded by a grant from the Workforce Alliance of South Central Kansas, the handbook guides the unemployed through some of the financial, psychological, and practical aspects of handling a layoff, as well as listing specific resources available in the Wichita/Sedgwick County area.
Koeber will also present material from the special section at the Jan. 9 Opportunity Expo 2004, a full day of presentations, workshops and exhibits on resources available to laid-off, unemployed, and underemployed workers that will be held at the Eugene M. Hughes Metropolitan complex.
Other assistance through the project includes access to up to $40,000 worth of scholarships at WSU.
For more information on the project and its benefits, go online to www.wichita.edu/springboard.