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March 21, 2014

Jorge Alcaraz, 21, joined the International Rescue Committee (IRC) Connect2Work program in August 2013. When he started the program, he had no work experience but said his primary goal was to find a job where he “can make people’s dreams come true.” Jorge completed the Work Readiness Training program and Digital Literacy classes with great enthusiasm.

Jorge noted that the work readiness training helped him understand more about résumés and applications. “It built my confidence and encouraged me to apply to more jobs,” he said.

In November, Jorge started a public-sector internship at Cyber Café, where he is helping seniors learn how to use computers, including email and social networking platforms. Jorge has received excellent reviews from his supervisor, who notes that Jorge has been extremely patient with the seniors.

In addition, Jorge has taken full advantage of the one-on-one job search appointments offered at the IRC office, both with interns and with his case manager. During these appointments, he was able to clarify things he didn’t understand in the applications and received tips for applying. It was also through the one-on-one appointments that Jorge learned of an opportunity at Chipotle. The IRC employer relations team connected with Chipotle’s recruitment team and recommended him for the position. Chipotle gave him an interview and he was recently hired there. He is now working part time, hoping to start community college next semester and ultimately pursue a degree in social work.

The IRC helps refugees who are invited by the U.S. government to come to America to seek safety and freedom. The IRC Connect2Work program addresses the academic and skill needs of vulnerable in- and out-of-school youth, aligning their education with relevant, real-world exposure to and training for high-growth occupations, and supporting them in becoming engaged, thriving members of the community. The Connect2Work program Career Pathways include biotechnology/high-tech, healthcare, automotive technology and machining, public sector, and cosmetology. For more about the IRC, visit

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