Alfred Davis-Shih graduated college in 2010. He quickly pursued his passion at the time working on the production side of TV commercials, short-form documentaries, news stories, and more. However, in 2014, Alfred decided to pursue a different passion: data analytics. He was offered an amazing job at a large, internationally-recognized technology company in Chicago. Alfred and his husband made the move from Tallahassee, Florida to Chicago in the Summer of 2019. His career blossomed and he enjoyed his time there until November 2022 when the company experienced layoffs that directly impacted him.

“Because I was laid off right before the holiday season, I didn’t actively start pursuing a new job until the new year,” says Alfred. “And I’m glad I did because during that time, there were massive layoffs happening all over the tech industry.” This led to a revelation. He wanted to remain in technology, but sought to pursue a career with growing opportunities like those available in data science, machine learning, and artificial intelligence. He knew that he would need to pursue additional training and certifications. Alfred applied to National Able Network’s Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) program and quickly began his new career path. He was accepted at a Data Science and Machine Learning Bootcamp at Northeastern Illinois University.

While training, Alfred worked to fine-tune his job search skills with his career coach Stephanie Levine. “I learned about all these other services available. It was definitely an added surprise! The career fairs connected me to the right companies, and the resume review was super awesome, “ Alfred said. Alfred’s hard work and determination paid off and while he was still in training he was hired as the Senior Manager with Finance Data Governance for Shake Shack’s Corporate offices. “It’s been interesting to do the bootcamp while working, because I’ve been able to apply what I’m learning almost immediately,” said Alfred. “It all just came together at the right time. I was very lucky in that sense.”

When reflecting on his experience at National Able Network, Alfred says, “Massive, massive thank you. It was such a nice surprise to find this organization and everyone working in it. I don’t think I would’ve advanced as quickly as I did without having National Able Network be part of my journey.”