My name is C. Dudley or Tina for short and I worked hard to put myself through Danville Community College during the period of August 2010 to May 2012 in which I graduated top of my class. I did apply for and receive financial aid but wasted nothing because I completed my Graphic Imaging Technology Degree during the day and a Photography Certificate at night. I used every penny of aid money plus a $1,750 school loan, so there wasn’t a check issued at the end of every semester like other students. I worked as a construction worker on the weekend and when I could fit it in, during the week just to pay the bills and graduate.
I am a mother of two and I wanted to show my children that a degree in your background can open the world for you. I told them, a degree is basically your only option away from minimum wage unless you’re one of the lucky few that were able to catch a break.
I was so very excited when I applied to and was hired by Womack Publishing in Chatham, Virginia just to get shorted because of a government contract agreement with the state. To the readers, yes you read that properly and yes it was as unfair as it sounds. The company covered numerous Newspapers for both Virginia and North Carolina. Three of North Carolina’s were mine; my boss would inform me often of their praise. While employed as a Graphic Designer, I completed around a hundred or more newspaper ads, sixteen flyers, an event calendar and a magazine cover. I met all appropriate deadlines early and never complained, with a smile on my face always. I enjoyed the creativity and inspiration of my career and looked forward to a bright future.
On the 89th day of employment, I was called into the office for what I thought was my ninety-day probation evaluation but I was issued my walking papers instead. It completely took me by surprise and because Virginia is a no-fault employment state, yup you guessed it; absolutely no reason why. With my hopes dampened, I swallowed my pride and asked if there was anything I excelled with or could improve upon before I moved on to my next employment option. I was simply told, “Nope, I wish you well.”
When I applied to the next six available design jobs that were within thirty miles from where I lived, I was informed that I didn’t have enough experience and to reapply when I had more in my employment background. I felt I had no choice and went back to construction and restaurant work because I had to now, show my children that a parent does whatever it takes to provide for and take care of them.
Last year I ran into Morgan at General Dollar, a girl I graduated with and was informed that she too had worked in the exact same position and was relieved of employment exactly the same way on the 89th day as well. She also informed me that she knew four other people that graduated at the same time or a year later, to have the same thing happen working for the same company.
Yes, the government is helping businesses with these contracts but they are hurting the little people, the people that pay in taxes and that have put in their effort and time to get those jobs. Another company guilty of this situation is Telvista, Inc. of Danville, Virginia or was during 2008-2010. I don’t understand how that is moral because to me I can’t seem to make sense of why a company would ruin the futures of the average person who worked so hard just for a bonus check! But hey I care about my fellow neighbor.
Over the last year, I’ve struggled with myself on writing this article but it’s been nagging me as a story that needs to be told. So as much as it pains me to be unprofessional and name call, Womack Publishing is not a place you want to apply to. Don’t let your dreams be smothered by a company that cares more for money than about their employees and how hard they’ve worked.