Orbital ATK donates computers for jobseekers
— Countless jobseekers will have an easier path to employment after Orbital ATK and other companies donated computers to the Mary Randall Center earlier this month.
The company donated numerous desktop computers, a projector, whiteboard and computer tables for the purpose helping people search for jobs, complete housing applications and apply for benefits, said Pat Marks, executive director of the center’s parent organization, Meeting Ground. The Mary Randall Center is a daytime area for the homeless of those in danger of being homeless that provides resources such as medical services and job assistance.Three of the computers were donated by Dell, while DTI Inc., a company in Newark, Del., donated its time to help set up the conference room, which houses the projector and whiteboard, said Kurt Olsen, senior director of information systems with Orbital ATK.
Marks said Alan Sexton, business services director at Susquehanna Workforce Network, suggested that Meeting Ground reach out to the technology company for help, and offered to be a facilitator in the process.
“It warmed my heart,” Marks said about a group from the IT department who offered their time to set up the new equipment.
Even though the computers are meant primarily to help with finding jobs, users will also be allowed to use them for their social media needs. Shenise Daughtry, program director for the center, said there is no time limit for people to search and apply for jobs, benefits or housing, but officials will hold a time limit on surfing social media, such as Facebook.
The computers will make it easier for jobseekers to communicate with potential employers directly and stay in touch with the hiring process, learning tips and advice along the way.
Daughtry said a group from Lazarus Rising, an organization that provides Delaware’s homeless population with job preparation skills, has already utilized the new equipment to help people create resumes and an email account. Previously, the group had been helping people with their job searches on a single laptop, but with the extra computers it allowed more one-on-one instruction, Marks said.
Cindy Blackburn was one of those benefitting from the donation, noting that she could apply to more jobs in a shorter timeframe than if she were to visit business in person. She said she has applied to about a dozen jobs so far within the past two weeks with the help of the computers.
Richard Timpone said he’s used the computers once or twice a week to check his email and apply for jobs.
“I was so happy that ATK donated these computers,” he said.