YLNG had the pleasure of speaking with Brenda Burgos, Senior Administrative Assistant in the Department of Pediatrics Chair’s/Administration Office, and Guillermo Morales, Material’s Assistant at the Yale University’s Library Shelving Facility in Hamden.
Brenda and Guillermo have been married for 20 years, are both hires from New Haven Works, and are parents of a New Haven Promise scholar. Check out their interview below.
Tell me about your current role at Yale University?
Brenda: I am a Senior Administrative Assistant in the Department of Pediatrics Chair’s/Administration Office. I provide administrative support for the Chair, Vice-Chair, Director and Administrative Manager of the Department.
Guillermo: I am a Material’s Assistant at the Yale University’s Library Shelving Facility in Hamden.
Describe the path that lead you to secure a job a Yale.
Brenda: After 14 years of working in NYC for my former employer, the company decided to relocate the department overseas, and as a result I was laid off. Although I was very sad that this happened, I decided to give it a positive spin and focus on my mission to find a job in New Haven. I applied to many jobs and even with over 15 years’ of administrative and customer service experience and excellent computer skills it was very hard landing a full-time job. I heard about New Haven Works and decided to go to the orientation and became a member. At New Haven Works, I met wonderful, compassionate people that really cared about matching me with the right opportunity. With New Haven Works support, in less than 4 months I was placed in a temporary assignment at Yale University. After that assignment ended, they proactively worked with me in getting me a full-time permanent job and in less than a month I was placed on another temporary assignment at Yale School of Medicine, where I am currently holding a permanent position. I am very grateful to the people in New Haven Works with their support this was possible; they are amazing!
Guillermo: I was a Shipping/Receiving Assistant for over 9 years at Bishop Orchard’s and I liked my job very much, but I always wanted to work at Yale University. Even though it was my dream, I didn’t pursue it nor applied to any of the job postings because I heard that it was very difficult to get hired. My wife, who was already a member of New Haven Works, encouraged me to go to the orientation; I did and became a member of New Haven Works. Then, I went to a New Haven Promise student’s event held at Yale University for the parents of New Haven Promise students that were looking for a job. There I met people from New Haven Works who advised me with valuable information and provided me with the steps I needed to take to get a job at the University. New Haven works proactively helped me search for jobs, apply, edit my resume and practice with mock interviews. With their support I landed a full-time job at the University; my dream came true! I am really grateful, New Haven Works staff really care about getting New Haven residents jobs.
What are your main responsibilities in your role?
Brenda: I provide administrative support for the Chair, Vice-Chair, Director and Administrative Manager of the Department.
Guillermo: I am responsible for delivering books to different libraries within Yale Campus when requested.
What do you like most about your work?
Brenda: I like the fact that I work with pediatricians that help little children every day. I feel honored and rewarded by providing them with the support they need. I really love the people that I work with and what they stand for.
Guillermo: I have the opportunity to know all the different libraries that Yale has.
How does your job affect your general lifestyle?
Brenda: I have to say, being home when the sun is still out and shining is the best feeling ever. At my previous job I used to get home close to 9pm every day. Now with this job at Yale, I get home early and spend time with my family, which is a big plus for me. Also, I get more sleep in the mornings and no more long commutes.
Guillermo: I am closer to home and this allows me to spend more time with my family.
What advice would you give someone who is considering this type of job (or field)?
Brenda: If you love doing this type of job I would say go for it, but get the support. Go to New Haven Works orientation and see what they have to offer. Having them working with you will make it easier when you apply to jobs and the odds of you getting hired will improve drastically.
Guillermo: Never give up; if you like this type of work, pursue it. Get all the support you need, there are many resources out there like New Haven Works to help you achieve your career goals.
What do you think about the Latino Networking Group?
Brenda: I think it is a great support group for Latinos in the Yale community as well as the outside community.
Guillermo: It is a great way for Latino’s to get involved within the Yale community.