Author Archive

PIC Hosts Housing and Economic Rights Advocates

Thursday, April 13th, 2017


On Wednesday, April 12, PIC hosted the Housing and Economic Rights Advocates (HERA) as they discussed consumer protections for student loans with representatives from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Pictured above are Seth Frotman, Student Loan Ombudsman (middle, speaking), and Richard Williams, Associate Student Loan Ombudsman (middle, left) with CFPB.


Like Us on Facebook to receive more updates.

Hiring Event Brings 170 Applicants for Jobs with Energy Efficient Company

Thursday, February 16th, 2017

Recruiters from Volt Workforce Solutions engaged with 175 job applicants at a recruitment event on Thursday, February 16 at Oakland PIC’s Downtown Oakland Career Center. Several applicants – nearly half of those attending – passed job assessments to be considered for positions with an energy efficient car company in Fremont.

“I was pleasantly surprised to have over 100 qualified people sign up and pass our assessment for these positions,” said Noela Campbell, Sourcing Specialist with Volt Workforce Solutions. “I’m happy to have had this opportunity to hire some exceptional candidates and I look forward to working with Oakland PIC again.”

Oakland Exceeds State Performance Goals in Workforce Development

Thursday, February 2nd, 2017

Oakland, CA, February 2, 2017 – The State of California recently released the 2015-2016 performance report for the state’s federally funded local workforce development areas, including Oakland. This report compares actual performance for job placements, job retention, and average wages to state-mandated goals set at the beginning of each program year.

These particular statistics are of vital importance for our local job seekers. The state’s report shows that the network of employment training providers for the City of Oakland performed well beyond state-mandated goals with both its youth and adult programs.

The adult service provider network includes the Oakland Private Industry Council, the Unity Council, and ASSETS Senior Services. This performance report reflects the dedicated work of staff at these three organizations in providing job training and workforce services to adult job seekers in Oakland, including recently laid off workers.

Read the full press release:

Oakland Exceeds State Performance Goals 2015-2016


Hundreds of Job Seekers Attend Veterans Job Fair Aboard the USS Hornet

Thursday, November 17th, 2016


The Veterans Job Fair welcomed 200 job seekers aboard the USS Hornet Museum in Alameda on Thursday, Nov. 10 for job opportunity and networking.

The event was co-sponsored by the USS Hornet Museum, Oakland PIC and the Veterans Supportive Services Agency. Job seekers met with more than 40 employers including Home Depot, Apple, AT&T, Securitas, Michael’s Transportation, EBMUD, AAA, Alameda Police, Artech, US Postal Service,, Wells Fargo and more.

The event connected veterans, active military and military spouses to vital job skills resources to assist in their job search.

Photos by Ashley Chambers.


Thursday, August 25th, 2016


The computer resource lab at Oakland PIC was bustling with Safeway staff as they assisted job candidates through the online application process during PIC’s Safeway Job Fairs held on Wednesday, August 10 and Wednesday, August 17, 2016.

With the opening of a new Safeway store at 51st and Broadway in Oakland, recruiters conducted interviews, background checks and drug screenings for 288 job seekers on August 17 – which included unemployed applicants, people laid off by WalMart in Oakland this year, and enrollees in the Oakland Housing Authority Jobs Plus Pilot Program in partnership with Oakland PIC.

“We are excited to host Safeway during this job fair and to see job seekers getting hired,” said Gay Plair Cobb, CEO of Oakland PIC.

Open job positions included cashier, bakery, deli, produce, pharmacy and Starbucks clerks.

“We’re looking for bright, energetic, customer service-oriented people,” said Debra Feleke, District 4 Recruiter, Safeway. “We have various positions available. We have full benefits and plenty of room for advancement.”

As a result of the Safeway Job Fairs on August 10 and August 17, 148 people were offered jobs at the new store Safeway is opening at 51st and Broadway in Oakland. Applicants waited patiently throughout the hiring process, and for many of them, it was well worth it.


One notable experience was that of two people who were laid off by WalMart in Oakland when the store closed in January this year. They both started working at WalMart in Union City but really wanted to get back working in Oakland. The Safeway Job Fair gave them that chance when they both were hired on August 17!

Safeway will open its new store on September 14, 2016 at 5100 Broadway in Oakland.

Photos by Ashley Chambers.


Department of Transportation Hosts HAZMAT Training at West Oakland Neighborhood Career Center

Wednesday, August 10th, 2016

A classroom full of students participated in a two-day HAZMAT training with the Department of Transportation at PIC’s West Oakland Neighborhood Career Center August 8-9, 2016. During this training opportunity, students learned transportation regulations, vehicle safety, packaging rules and procedures, and emergency response.

The training equipped students with valuable skills that they can apply in various job positions such as a driver, packager, dock worker, warehousing and construction. Students that successfully completed the two-day training also received a Department of Transportation Card.

Congratulations to all the students!



West Oakland Neighborhood Career Center Hosts Tesla Hiring Event

Wednesday, May 11th, 2016
Volt Recruiter Lindsey Cook speaks with a job candidate about positions with Tesla. Photo by Ashley Chambers.

Volt Recruiter Lindsey Cook speaks with a job candidate about positions with Tesla. Photo by Ashley Chambers.

Opportunity was abound at the West Oakland Neighborhood Career Center on Monday, May 9, 2016 as the center hosted a hiring event for Tesla Motors, the Silicon Valley company that produces energy-efficient electric cars. Several job candidates that attended the event were eager to take advantage of the job opportunities with Tesla.

Tesla is currently hiring for production associates, forklift drivers, material handlers, warehouse workers and general labor positions. The motor company has over 14,000 employees, according to recent reports.

The hiring event invited candidates to take a pre-assessment test to determine their eligibility for available positions.

Recruiters with Volt Workforce Solutions, (l to r) Jessica Quezada, Lindsey Cook, and Noela Campbell, help a job candidate during the Tesla hiring event at the West Oakland Neighborhood Career Center. Photo by Ashley Chambers.

Recruiters with Volt Workforce Solutions, (l to r) Jessica Quezada, Lindsey Cook, and Noela Campbell, help a job candidate during the Tesla hiring event at the West Oakland Neighborhood Career Center. Photo by Ashley Chambers.

According to Noela Campbell, a Sourcing Specialist with Volt Workforce Solutions, a staffing agency contracted by Tesla, over 500 new workers have been hired to date with the motor company, with some positions starting at $17 an hour.

Eligible candidates should have open and flexible availability, the ability to lift 30-50 pounds, a high school diploma and be able to stand for long periods of time. They are looking for candidates with a strong work ethic and reliable transportation.

Job seekers interested in working with Tesla can attend a job fair on Saturday, May 14, 2016, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Volt Workforce Solutions, 2201 Walnut Ave., Suite 110 in Fremont.

For more information, contact the West Oakland Neighborhood Career Center at (510) 419-0392.

State EDD Director Patrick Henning Visits Oakland Career Center

Friday, April 22nd, 2016

We welcomed California Employment Development Department (EDD) Director Patrick Henning to our Downtown Oakland Career Center on Wednesday, April 20, 2016. Director Henning was able to see firsthand the work that PIC staff does to secure jobs for our customers that walk through the career center each year. He also spoke with users of our free computer lab.

Helping the Homeless and Underemployed Find Hope

Monday, April 18th, 2016

Oaklanders Hard-Pressed to Find Housing Even with Minimum Wage Jobs

Stacey Harris with his son. Photo by Adam L. Turner.

 Stacey Harris with his son. Photo by Adam L. Turner.

Stacey Harris is on a mission to provide for himself and his son in this challenging economy. As a single father who is also struggling to find stable and affordable housing, securing a good job makes all the difference.

Harris and his son have been homeless, sometimes staying with friends.

Along his journey to find stable employment, Harris has attended the career center at the Oakland Private Industry Council (PIC) where he says counselors helped him develop his résumé, with transportation costs and support in finding stable work. He recently enrolled in truck driving school through help from the PIC.

“Between taking care of my son, trying to find work and trying to find stable housing,” he explained, “to say it’s challenging is an understatement. It’s not easy finding stable living conditions in Alameda County. I just want to be able to take care of my son.”


“A Mistake Cannot Define You”

Sylvia recently started working at the Unity Council after receiving help in her job search from the Oakland PIC. Photo by Ashley Chambers.

Sylvia recently started working at the Unity Council after receiving help in her job search from the Oakland PIC. Photo by Ashley Chambers.

For Oakland resident Sylvia, one mistake should not define who a person is. She is a testament to that.

After having a run-in with the law 13 years ago, she has been searching for work for the past four years.

Last week, her search ended at the Unity Council where she now works as a program assistant. During her long job search, she had almost reached a breaking point.

“I kept thinking my record would deter me from getting a job. I felt hopeless,” Sylvia said, overcome with emotion.

After the Unity Council referred her to the Oakland Private Industry Council (PIC), she met counselors Louis King and Ellen Hoeft Edenfield. Their support and resources helped restore her hope in gaining employment despite her previous history.

“I met Mr. King and he gave me really good hope,” she said. “He told me, we can help you.”

“I’m very grateful for organizations like Unity Council and Oakland PIC. They really care about people. They made me feel comfortable and okay in dealing with my issue.”

She hopes to find a support group where she can help others who have a prior record find employment. Sylvia looks forward to growing in her new job and applying her computer and language skills to help her community.

(Sylvia’s last name has been omitted from the article to protect her identity).