Cheryl Hazek, a clinical social worker, ran her own private practice business for five years. Eventually, Cheryl got to a point where running her own business wasn’t as fulfilling as it once was. She felt isolated at work and began looking for other career options. As a social worker, Cheryl had heard about CareerPlace’s job search services and decided to attend orientation and see for herself.

“I had my own business, I was juggling being a mom and being a professional, and I traveled a lot. So, it was really difficult being a small business owner,” said Cheryl. “I had heard about CareerPlace from being in the social work field, so I joined…I was in a professional crisis.”

             Cheryl Hazek

After joining CareerPlace, Cheryl participated in many workshops and worked one on one with a career coach. While at CareerPlace, Cheryl took the StrengthFinders workshop and learned that one of her strengths was working collaboratively. This revelation explained why she felt so isolated in private practice!

Cheryl’s career coach, Sharon Lawrence, helped her build a narrative for herself and her professional experiences. “She really challenged me to create a resume that was out of the box – it was almost like writing a resume for a job versus who I am,” said Cheryl. Sharon also coached Cheryl, a self-identifying introvert, to network successfully in order to make connections and discover resources.

During her job search, Cheryl came across a career posting that peaked her interest, she applied, and was hired! Cheryl is now the Children’s Mental Health and Behavior Specialist at YWCA Metropolitan Chicago. “I’m really happy. I like the mission, it aligns with who I am,” Cheryl said.

When asked for advice to pass along to other professionals, Cheryl said, “Go to CareerPlace to get support and utilize the resources. The biggest incentive for me was my career coach. She was the force that kept me focused. Her experience, support, insight and coaching were immeasurable. The level of teaching in terms of the classes was really high level. ”

Congratulations, Cheryl!

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