Life After Layoffs

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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The number of layoffs announced at the larger aircraft companies alone has reached nearly 8,000. Many of them are already looking for their next job. More aircraft employees will be finding out this week if they too will be losing their jobs.

Chris Ligi was a manager on the Hawker line in plant four.

“The day I was let go from my position, I said, ‘It’s industry. It’s aviation.’ And there are a ton of jobs out there,” said Ligi.

He anticipated he could lose his job when the company told employees about a looming second round of cuts.

Like other local aircraft workers, he went to an aviation career fair held late last month in Wichita.

Several companies from across the U.S. were looking for talent.

Ligi found leads which he believes will help him land his next aircraft job. He’s already had a couple of interviews.

“There are a few other big companies out there who have contacted me. And I’m waiting on phone calls now. So, life after Hawker? Yes there is,” said Ligi.

Traffic from laid-off aircraft workers has increased in recent days at the Wichita Workforce Center at First and Main, where they can get help finding another job or education and training for new work.

Kimberly Dickerson was recently laid off from Cessna after three years with the company. She’s ready to get past the sound of aircraft riveting and enter the nursing field.

“It’s always needed, not up and down like aircraft is,” said Dickerson.

The economic stimulus bill passed by the Senate this afternoon would increase the money the Wichita Workforce Center would receive for job re-training, perhaps as much as $2.5 million.

If you’ve recently been laid off or are about to be laid off, you should visit the Wichita Workforce Center.

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