Danielle V. Minson — Raising the Bar
Cincinnati 2020 in 2015: Q&A with Joni Burton, CEO of JVS Career Services: Guest Post by Barb Miller
How did you first get involved in Cincinnati 2020?
JVS Career Services’ mission is to support the Cincinnati Jewish community by helping job seekers find employment and employers find top talent. Because that mission requires such cross-community collaboration, Cincinnati 2020 has been an important focus of JVS Career Services from its inception. I became involved in Cincinnati 2020 when I became CEO of JVS Career Services this past February.
What does Cincinnati 2020 mean to you?
To me, Cincinnati 2020 is a collaborative effort among the agencies in the Jewish community that focuses on creating a more vibrant, connected, and welcoming Jewish community with even greater career opportunities. I see it as a model that other Jewish communities will look to implement.
How has Cincinnati 2020 helped craft a new direction for JVS Career Services?
JVS Career Services just celebrated its 75th birthday. Our focus has always been supporting the Jewish community by helping job seekers gain employment. Because of the Jewish Federation’s annual support and The Jewish Foundation’s support of the Cincinnati 2020 initiative, JVS Career Services has expanded its service offerings to support job seekers throughout their careers. So now, we’re identifying internships for the college student and assisting them with resume crafting and interviewing preparation. We’ve also added a career coaching service to support mid- and senior-level job seekers looking to advance their careers. In addition, JVS Career Services, in collaboration and with a grant from The Jewish Foundation, has added employer services, including recruiting and outplacement services for local businesses, which results in additional opportunities for our job seekers. While we haven’t changed our direction, Cincinnati 2020 has given us new tools to move forward faster as a result of successful collaborations in our Jewish community.
Cincinnati 2020 calls for more collaboration among Jewish communal agencies. What does that look like at JVS Career Services?
We are constantly networking and collaborating with Cincinnati’s Jewish communal agencies. Here’s one example: JVS Career Services has partnered with Miami University and University of Cincinnati Hillels to connect college students with Cincinnati’s top employers through the Workum and Onward Israel internship programs. So now, when we talk to employers, we’re documenting what internships are out there and we’re working with the Hillels to advertise them. We’ve also partnered with the Esther and Maurice Becker Networking and Mentoring Center, the young adult engagement arm of the Federation focused on creating a connected young Jewish community. Together, we host joint programs and networking events for young professionals.
What does the future of JVS Career Services look like through the lens of Cincinnati 2020?
We are already doing great. 2015 has been a record breaker for JVS Career Services. From January through September, we’ve seen 152 new job starts for our clients. That translates into an economic impact of $7,881,869! I think we’re going to be known as the career center for the Cincinnati community, period. Meaning, employers are going to come to us and people who are looking for jobs are going to come to us. We will be the standard. The go-to place for anything careers.