In 2016, 20-year-old Passionae Wyche was at an employment impasse.

She had worked in a warehouse, as a cashier and as a hostess, but struggled. She had never experienced success or satisfaction in the previous jobs she held.

Later that year, her life became more difficult as her mom and the rock of her life, Claudette, passed away, leaving Passionae, who is on the autism spectrum, feeling more depressed and lost than ever. Seeing her struggle, a family friend recommended Goodwill’s Workforce Development program to Passionae as a way to help get her on the right path to a positive future.

At Goodwill, Passionae hit the ground running. She earned certifications in Microsoft Office Suite and Customer Service and worked on resume writing and job search skills. Through her job coaches at Goodwill, Passionae was introduced to CAI’s Autism2Work program. After attending CAI’s eight-day Job Readiness Training program, CAI offered Passionae a full-time role as an Operational Analyst Role at a large financial firm.

Within a few months, she looked at the company’s processes and found ways to enhance their efficiency. These changes resulted in her consistently exceeding goals, as well as becoming the first staff member to close out 3,000 tickets in one month. These efficiencies have helped her team perform at a 30 percent higher rate.

Passionae’s CAI Team Lead, Rhonda Melville-Belford, reports that Passionae consistently meets all her metrics and is at a 100 percent performance level. “Because of Goodwill’s career counselors showing an interest in her, Passionae has opened up and flourished in her new role,” said Melville-Belford. “I am very proud of her accomplishments.”

With her new role as a full-time member of the corporate technology team, Passionae said, “If you told me two years ago I’d be here, I wouldn’t have believed you. I am surprised! It is a refreshing change doing something I love that uses my skills and keeps me interested.”

Passionae’s manager at the financial firm said, “Passionae’s consistently among the highest producers every month. She has a great attitude and is always engaged!”

After 12 months working as a member of the CAI A2W team performing work for the financial firm, Passionae was offered and accepted an Access Security Specialist job directly with that company and happily remains there today.