Over 1.8 million immigrants have entered America as college-educated professionals. In their homelands, they were doctors, engineers, scientists, and accountants. However, in the States these people find themselves struggling as they work for minimum wage at low-skill jobs if they can find employment at all. Upwardly Global seeks to remedy this imbalance.
Upwardly Global is a national non-profit organization dedicated to eliminating employment barriers for skilled immigrants and refugees. Since their founding in 2000, Upwardly Global has helped many immigrants rebuild their professional careers as they gain job-search training and networking connections. The organization pairs corporate partners with qualified immigrants.
A Success Story
Paola was a physician in Colombia with an MBA. When she moved to Chicago in 2007 after marrying an American, she couldn’t find employment. “For a long time I didn’t do anything, because I didn’t have the contacts or anything,” she says. However, when Paola connected with Upwardly Global, “they really changed my life.”
Upwardly Global helped refine Paola’s resume and make networking connections. To build her local reputation, Paola volunteered for two medical researchers as well as worked as a medical translator. Working closely with doctors encouraged her to relicense. She successfully completed the necessary steps to attain her medical license.
Then Upwardly Global (UpGlo) guided Paola as she wrote her personal statement and prepared for five residency interviews. Paola found the perfect match with a Chicago-based Family Medicine residency, and her personal statement was a determining factor in her getting the interview, according to the director. Paola says, “My personal statement was the key that got me the interview with the program I matched with, and UpGlo was very helpful with it.”
Upwardly Global offers a Immigrant Bridge program for immigrants with bachelor’s or higher degrees. Those accepted in the program receive valuable training on marketing themselves, creating a cover letter and resume, and networking and interviewing skills. They work one-on-one with a coach and access job placement services including having their names listed on a job board. Lastly, they can receive a low interest loan up to $10,000 for educational purposes.
Volunteers Mentor Immigrants
Upwardly Global offers online tutorials as well as career summits to bring immigrants and mentors together. Volunteers in a variety of business and professional settings give their time and expertise to help new Americans in their career building. Not only is the service rewarding, but the coaching builds relationships and exposure to top businesses and corporations.
Upwardly Global Builds America
As Upwardly Global continues their mission, America benefits from a more diverse work force. Poverty is diminished. For instance, in 2011 alone, Upwardly Global placed 280 employees creating a one-year increase in income of $8.4 million to immigrant families who were formerly struggling. 71% of those placed were previously unemployed or lived on government assistance or savings. Furthermore, these job placements equate with a larger tax base as well as open lower-paying jobs for those who will consider them meaningful employment.
Upwardly Global is making a major impact to individuals, families, employers, and the country at large. If you would like to make a donation or research volunteer opportunities, contact Upwardly Global.