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Laurene Wests: WorkSource Center helps thousands

Live from City Hall

Posted: January 28, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: January 28, 2012 1:55 a.m.

Each year, thousands of Santa Clarita residents pass through the doors of the Santa Clarita WorkSource Center at College of the Canyons. The center, like hundreds of others across the country, provides free information and resources to adults looking for work.

Most people think the WorkSource Center is only for the unemployed, when in fact, it offers career guidance, a variety of job-readiness workshops and free resources for those seeking a new career opportunity, as well.

The center’s services are tailored to meet the needs of the unemployed, underemployed, seasoned professionals, college students and even mothers returning to work, with the goal of helping people get on the right employment track.  

In early 2010, the WorkSource Center moved to the University Center at College of the Canyons to provide better integration with a variety of career and business services already available on site.

The result has been a more comprehensive service for clients, from basic assistance with job searches, to referrals for those looking to start new businesses, and even access to training programs providing free education to qualified candidates.

This month, the Santa Clarita City Council approved a plan to allow increased integration between the WorkSource Center and the career and business programs at College of the Canyons, providing more opportunities for employers and job seekers.

College of the Canyons is now administering the day-to-day operations of the center, allowing better integration with the College’s Economic Development Division, which has an expertise in local workforce research, development and training.

If you haven’t been to the WorkSource Center in a while, I invite you to take a few minutes and visit the center for a tour and introduction to the services available to you — free of charge.

The following is just a few of the programs and services accessible through the WorkSource Center.  


Job and career fairs

Several times each year, the Santa Clarita WorkSource Center collaborates with dozens of local and regional employers to host free job and career fairs.

Events are usually two to three hours in length and offer prospective employees face-to-face interaction with company representatives who are hiring as a result of growth in Santa Clarita.

Positions range from entry-level to management and include industries from retail and manufacturing to arts, entertainment and education.  


Free workshops

The center provides assistance to a variety of clients, including those who have been recently laid off, individuals seeking new career opportunities and clients who have been out of the workforce for years.

Each month, a variety of classes and workshops are offered to help address the needs of the center’s diverse clientele. These free workshops include: resume building; interviewing skills for those who need feedback on how to make the most of the individual interaction with a prospective employer; a transferable skills workshop designed to show how the skills acquired in one industry apply to other industries; a Job Hunters Club, which provides networking and topical discussion for those seeking employment; and even specialized classes in Microsoft Word, Excel and Access, as well as general accounting courses. All classes are booked on a first-come, first-served basis.


Specialized career recruitments

The city’s increased collaboration with College of the Canyons allows WorkSource Center clients increased opportunities to apply for specialized career training in growing industries such as manufacturing and green technology, and in professions such as media/general office and professional/managerial.

The College of the Canyons Fast Track Institute provides fast-paced, intensive job preparation programs for job seekers, mid-career professionals, recent high school graduates and others looking to jump-start their careers in just a few months.

The Fast Track courses include student-paid and grant-funded tuition options, and the WorkSource Center works closely with the college to host recruitments for grant-funded opportunities whenever possible.

All of the Fast Track programs have been selected based on labor demand, and are focused on industries where future job growth is expected.              

If you’ve been looking for a no-cost, local resource to help you with your job search or career exploration, check out the Santa Clarita WorkSource Center at College of the Canyons.

The center is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and features a variety of free employment tools, including computers, fax, Internet access and job leads.

A complete list of monthly workshops, upcoming job fairs, and career opportunities is available at or call (661) 799-9675 for more information.  

Laurene Weste is a Santa Clarita city councilwoman and can be reached at


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