When my husband and I decided to move to Manila, our tita offered me a position in her company that sends workers abroad – basically a job placement agency.
Coming from a nonprofit marketing background, I had a lot of doubts. Would I learn the ropes of the industry? Will this benefit my career and….will I even enjoy it?
Yes, yes, and….yes!
I spend most of my days in the office, interfacing with another agency in Australia and moving candidates along the visa documentation process. The marketing geek inside me can’t help but to take an interest in our applicants’ stories and the long journeys they must make.
Today though, I had a field trip…
I won’t bore you with the details, but a huge part of the visa documentation process is a skills assessment, where the workers must prove they can actually do the work they were hired to do.
So, armed with Jollibee drive-thru breakfast, we left bright and early to Manila (about 1 hour drive with so-so traffic) to the testing center.
Here is the testing center – not intimidating at all, right?
We climbed four stories to the top…
Then we climbed one more flight of stairs to the roof, where the testing was taking place. This area of Manila is called Santa Ana. Small world! The bridge you see off in the distance spans over Pasig River, which I’ll cover another day.
Here’s another shot from the roof…
And here are candidates being tested on their welding skills. The assessor went from stall to stall, poking his head around and taking notes.
Watch out for flying sparks!
(I wanted to grab this shot, just for fun. The assessor was looking at me funny for taking so many pictures…)
All in all it feels great playing a part in giving someone a better future, while learning new skills along the way. I’m sure I’ll have more stories to share about this.