“This has been a journey, from getting my high school diploma to almost finishing my Associate’s Degree with the help of the Training Fund.”, Naomi states. Naomi Vassell, who will receive her Associate’s Degree in General Studies in May 2014 from Capital Community College, will continue on at Capital to pursue an Associate’s Degree in Social Services.
“I like school. I get anxious, with butterflies, but the challenges and accomplishments make me feel high! Even if I don’t get a job in my field, I will have the satisfaction of knowing I accomplished so much—a whole wealth of knowledge.”
Naomi, a CNA who started working at Chelsea Place in 1994, first saw a poster about the Training Fund in the employee lunch room. She didn’t have her driver’s license at that time, so she took a bus to get to class. She is a long time 1199 member and has used the Training Fund for her high school diploma, “bridging” to college, tuition reimbursement, college tutoring and Spanish for the Healthcare worker. Naomi finds the teachers she has had at the Training Fund and college, patient and willing to help.
She is a person who aspires to be a role model in encouraging others to use the Training Fund. She wants her co-workers to know that the Training Fund “(I)s there for them to use. She speaks of persistence when reflecting on her efforts—referencing Langston Hughes who spoke of “toiling when others were sleeping.” “If you don’t use the Fund, the management will take it away. And for those that think they’re too old—they’re not!”