Nicole, Employed Cara Participant, proves to her children that the future is full of possibility.
Nicole is a rock-star mom of four who came to Cara in search of opportunity. She encourages her children to work hard, continue their education, and pursue their dreams. “My hope is that they will achieve whatever success looks like for them,” Nicole says wholeheartedly. The most effective way to instill this message, she thought, was to prove it was not only possible but within reach.
She decided to head back to school and earn her master’s degree. With a diploma in hand, she felt sure the new letters added to her name would be the key to unlocking a full-time position with a Chicago company. But unfortunately, it wasn’t that simple.
For years, the only positions she could secure were contract roles that took her way out into the suburbs. For one job in particular, she had to travel three hours one way. “How can I encourage my children to pursue higher education when I myself got a master’s degree and struggle to make a good salary?” she wondered.
This wasn’t what success looked like through Nicole’s eyes. Spending time with her husband and four children give her life purpose and direction. She wasn’t willing to sacrifice time with her family, but earning the additional income eased their financial stress.
It wasn’t until she learned about Cara that things started looking up.“Initially, I thought I would join Cara to inspire my son who was going through a lot of transitions into adulthood. I also thought about how I had searched for opportunities the same way for years. Cara could be good for me.”
Nicole came to Cara in August 2019, motivated to set the best example for her son and to start the career that she knew she was capable of having. Diving into our 4-week Transformations classes, she gained a newfound sense of optimism for her future and the support of an entire community. “We wouldn’t let anyone in our class slip through the cracks because we all have an objective: to get that job. For me, it wasn’t about finding one job but finding my career.”
Cara helped Nicole take the next step in her career as the Administrative Assistant & Office Manager at The Hatchery, a non-profit food and beverage incubator with the Industrial Council of Nearwest Chicago (ICNC). “I couldn’t possibly list everything that I get to do in my role. I’m on a team that has this amazing ad hoc way of working. We are a family who figures things out and makes decisions together.”
Now Nicole has a family at work who makes sure she can take care of her family at home. She is a true Mama Motivator proving to her children that they can have a future full of possibility.
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