What happens when you combine job seeker dedication, staff vision and ingenuity, and grit?

Presented by RochesterWorks! Guest Blogger, Barbara Wilcox

September 10, 2020


Unprecedented virtual workshop success during an unprecedented time.

COVID hit, and within days, RochesterWorks! management and staff launched itself into the E-Learning sphere. Many thanks to the innovators and do-ers who made this possible. (Here’s looking at you, Shawn, Rosa, Danielle, and All!)

 These developments set the stage for our 5 Steps to Rapid Employment program going virtual.

For 8 years, RochesterWorks! has hosted this blended learning 5-day, 20-hour, intensive workshop. Never, even in 80 years, could we have imagined making the experiential (in-class) learning online; after all, participants already do 2-4 hours of online work each night. Yet during a global pandemic, with much of the staff working remote, the 5 Steps Team – Rosa Smith-Montanaro, Master Instructor; Barbara Wilcox, Program Coordinator, Instructor and Coach; and 2 first-time Instructors, Ashley Mault and Sean Clancy; along with managers, Paula Roth and Viatta Tolbert-Carter – made this happen.  

Additionally, for the first time in several years, 5 Steps integrated seven Guest Coaches (the rest of our 5 Steps Coaches) into the mix. They did great! By introducing themselves, sharing expert Career Coaching insights, and being authentic, positive pillars of support, a truly close-knit and savvy online community formed.

Hear what a professional in Higher Ed Administration and graduate of the August 2020 5 Steps, aka COVID Cohort Champions, has to say, “It has been such a pleasure and an honor to meet everybody here. I have grown personally and professionally. I have a new direction on where I want to go and a better understanding of what I need to focus on for my job campaign. […] I am really excited and anticipating a lot of good things to come from this for everybody.” 

Thank you to all, including our 5 Steps Grads, who exhibited paramount resilience and leadership in an unprecedented time of uncertainty. Your future employers and colleagues are beyond fortunate to work with you. A STAR Story for all!

Interested in seeing what this Professional and Personal Development is all about? Watch our E-Learning Info Session! This makes you eligible to apply..

Barbara Wilcox Bio



Only RochesterWorks! provides a unique set of customized services to businesses and job seekers at little-to-no cost, preparing a skilled workforce and connecting them with opportunities in our region.



(585) 258-3500

100 College Ave, Suite 200

Rochester, N.Y. 14607

Hours of Operations:

Monday- Thursday 8:30AM - 4:30PM

Friday 8:30AM - 12:00PM