Written by: John DeRousie, Custom Marketing Solutions
FULTON, NY – With more than 45 programs across 4 service areas, Oswego County Opportunities (OCO) is strengthening Oswego County by providing the community a wide variety of human services. And while OCO services touch thousand of lives and offer a helping hand to those who need it the most, the agency provides Oswego County with more: The opportunity for a meaningful and enriching career in human services. Patty McGold, the official mascot for OCO’s upcoming Bowl O’ Gold Bowling Tournament, recently visited the agency to explore the many career opportunities that the agency offers.
One of Oswego County’s largest employers, OCO has a staff of more than 650 people and employs a wide range of individuals from medical professionals and councilors, to bus drivers, and support staff. With approximately 92% of its employees residing in Oswego County, OCO also provides a vital economic boost to the area.
“As one of the county’s largest employers and we are extremely proud of our workforce,” said Jo-Lyn Phillips, human resource generalist with OCO. “The vast majority of our employees have been here more than 5 years and more than 50% have 10 years of service or more.”
Phillips credits that success in part to the training that new employees receive and the environment in which they work. “All of our employees receive a thorough orientation so that they have an understanding of OCO’s history and a clear vision of the Agency’s mission. Our orientation process gives new employees the tools and guidance they need to excel in their position and provide our consumers with the best service possible. Additionally, our culture is to encourage employees to continue their growth and to take advantage of the many training opportunities available to them, said Phillips.
While OCO’s orientation provides a full day of training, the guidance that new employees receive doesn’t end there. Each program offers an on-boarding process that allows employees to get acquainted with their job while experienced staff members serve as mentors so that they may develop a better understanding of their position and their responsibilities. Cindy Seeber, OCO’s director of human resources, added that while the orientation and training play a large part in the success of OCO’s workforce, the environment in which they work is equally important.
“From our executive director down to our program coordinators, OCO’s management team does its best to create a comfortable, nurturing atmosphere. Working in the non-profit world is a different culture. The leadership that we receive and the opportunities that are awarded us are excellent, and the personal satisfaction that our employees receive from knowing they are truly helping others to reach their goals and become self-sufficient is immeasurable,” Seeber said. “Our employees are here because they choose to be. We can train skills; however, attitude and a caring heart is something they bring with them. This satisfaction of helping others is also evident in the number of volunteers that we have. More than 1200 caring individuals give freely of their time and talents, many of them serving our in Senior Services’ programs, ” said Seeber.
According to Seeber, OCO has between to 20 to 30 job opportunities across its service areas at any given time and volunteers are always welcome. To help fill these positions OCO reaches out to the community in many ways including hosting and attending area job fairs, and sharing employment opportunities with the NYS Department of Labor, area colleges and universities, and the Department of Social Services.
Additionally, employment opportunities are posted on OCO’s website, www.oco.org. “It’s easy to view and apply for any of our positions online,” said Seeber. “Simply click on the employment tab, to view a complete list of job openings and download an application. Internship and volunteer applications are also available on line. People can also apply in person or contact Stephanie Langdon or Holly Bristol at 315-598-4705.”
OCO’s Bowl O’ Gold official mascot, Patty McGold, is visiting various OCO sites throughout Oswego County as it reminds community members of OCO’s Bowl O’ Gold Bowling Tournament that will be held March 10 from noon to 6 p.m. at Lakeview Lanes, Route 3.
Businesses and individuals may also donate door prizes for the drawings and the silent auction. There also a limited number of opportunities for businesses and organizations interested in becoming a major sponsor of OCO’s Bowl O’ Gold Bowling Tournament. For registration or sponsorship information, or to donate a door prize, contact OCO at 315-598-4717 or visit the agency’s website at www.oco.org
OCO, Inc is a private, non-profit agency that has been supporting communities throughout Oswego County since 1966. A member agency of the United Way of Greater Oswego County, OCO provides more than 50 vital services throughout 80 separate locations. For more information, visit www.oco.org