Staff profile: Meet Sophia Barber

Sophia PortraitSophia Barber is a program coordinator at the San Diego Workforce Partnership. Here she tells a little bit about herself, both personally and professionally. 

If you had $30,000 to donate to a workforce development program, what would you want done with it?

I would love the funds to assist job seekers with childcare. As a parent myself, I’ve learned first hand how expensive daycare is here in San Diego. As a case manager, I’ve seen the struggle some participants have to endure to find affordable daycare or other alternatives for their family that allow them to start a work opportunity. 

What professional moment or project are you most proud of? 

What I like the most about workforce development is the chance to create connections and opportunities for young adults to explore an industry they might be interested in, and/or initiate their work experience through an internship, mentorship or an entry level job.

As a case manager for our City Mentorship program, I’ve had the opportunity to build rapport with participants who are set up for success through work readiness trainings that prepare them for the workforce. During their mentorship, participants learn about City of San Diego departments, best practices while working in an office and upcoming employment opportunities. I love to hear about the positive experiences participants have with their mentor or what it’s like for them to successfully complete the application/interview process for a job they want.

The best part is when I receive a call from a program participant saying they were offered a position they applied for—such a happy feeling! Being able to share in their growth and celebrate their achievements has been one of the most rewarding experiences throughout my career. 

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not working?

When I am not busy with my little ones, I love to dance Salsa and Bachata!