Retired but wanting to work? Passport to Employment can help
Creating jobs for Islanders -
Retirement from decades-long careers left Jo-Anne White and Paulette Pitre thinking about returning to the workforce.
Now they are training for the Island’s vibrant and fast-growing tourism industry through SkillsPEI’s Passport to Employment program. Passport to Employment helps unemployed, eligible workers aged 55 to 64 develop job search and employment skills to re-enter the workforce.
“I just felt that – after taking some time off with my retirement -- that I would like to take on some other work at least part of the year,” said White, a former teacher. “I like the idea of being with co-workers and the public and it would be good to have some money on top of my pension.”
Pitre, a retired bank employee, said the classes helped prepare her for the reality of job hunting in 2018 and would be useful to anyone.
“We’ve had advice on updating resumes, and changing resumes to suit particular job openings,” she said. “We’ve talked about job interviewing skills and what you can expect in an interview. A lot of people -- if they had a long career in one place -- may never have made a resume or had an interview in their lives.”
Workforce and Advanced Learning Minister Sonny Gallant said the Passport to Employment Program helps experienced, capable workers continue to work even after a first career has come to an end.
“All Islanders benefit when we allow everyone to contribute to the workforce,” he said. “Passport to Employment allows our province to benefit from the knowledge and experience of these seasoned workers while helping them continue to work and learn in the current labour market.”
Pitre said she is looking forward to her job search.
“I understand that a lot of tourism businesses actually prefer older workers in some ways, with business happening now in the spring and fall, tourism can’t rely on student workers the way it once might have. We’re available and we bring a lot of life experience and work experience to the job,” she said.
“After looking at the industry, I think I’d like to work as a front desk attendant or a theatre usher,” White said. “We just live in such a beautiful place; I’d like to show it to people.”