FastForward Blog

You (CNA) Do It, Too!

Published: February 21, 2020
If at first you don’t succeed, try, try (and try and try) again. Julian, a student in the FastForward Certified Nursing Aide program, did just that. After graduating high school, Julian had dreams of working in healthcare, but growing up in a small town in West Virginia, the only jobs available were in coal mining…
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Finding Work After a Layoff

Published: February 7, 2020
For 14 years, Greg Seals spent his days in the coal mines. He worked hard, day in and day out, to support his wife and four children. But when Blackjewel, a coal mining company with operations around the country, filed for bankruptcy and ultimately laid off its workforce, Seals was out of work and was…
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Industry Spotlight: Information Technology (IT)

Published: January 17, 2020
Are you an analytic thinker who likes solving problems and troubleshooting hardware or network issues? Do you speak techie? But then are you able to pivot and speak non-techie to technologically-challenged parents? If any of these questions resonate with you, the IT industry may be a fit for you. What is the information technology industry…
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How to set career and training goals: Tips from Career Coaches

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A new year means new goals for 2020. While exciting, goal setting often brings feelings of anxiety. We asked our experts. FastForward Career Coaches across Virginia share their top tips to set – and achieve – career and training goals. Start small. Going back to school or changing careers can be daunting at first. One…
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FastForward Career Coach Spotlight: Matt Newman

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When Matt Newman stands in front of a room of high schoolers to talk about life after high school, he likes to share the story behind his Mountain Empire Community College ID cards. That’s right. Cards, plural. The path to where he is today, a FastForward Career Coach at Mountain Empire Community College, wasn’t a…
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Laying the Groundwork for a Successful Future

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Up until a few years ago, Allen Miller’s only experience with asphalt was driving and shooting hoops on it. He didn’t think about the process behind combining a semi-solid form of petroleum with aggregate particles through a highly controlled mixing process. He didn’t pay attention to the number of summer paving projects, which is the…
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Three Local Resources for your 2020 Job Hunt

Published: January 6, 2020
Moving into a new year is like hitting the reset button. It’s a nice time to pause and reflect on the previous year and see what worked and what didn’t. And for some of us, what didn’t work may be our careers. While our primary goal with FastForward is to get Virginians trained for in-demand…
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Industry Spotlight: Business and Customer Service

Published: December 19, 2019
Have you ever been told, “You’re a people person?” Are you able to spark up a conversation with almost anyone you meet? Then a career in the Business and Customer Service industry may be a good fit for you. Or maybe you like to be behind the scenes, orchestrating the in’s and out’s of an…
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Step One: Get Yourself Organized

Published: December 12, 2019
Going through workforce training doesn’t have to be complicated. A little planning and organization can go a long way. Before you reach out to your local FastForward Career Coach, here are three things you can do to make things run as smoothly as possible. Do some research Whether you’re switching careers or looking to advance…
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Industry Spotlight: Healthcare

Published: November 26, 2019
If you have a passion for helping others, a knack for biology, enjoy working with your hands and want to have a job where you are making a difference in people’s lives, the healthcare industry might be for you, and timing couldn’t be better. Healthcare is one of the fastest growing industries in the United…
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