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New Employment After Becoming Blind: Interview with Martin Alvarado, San Juan, Texas

By Sam Morales, Employment Director of VAIL

Martin Alvarado is a 36-year-old Hispanic male who lives in San Juan, Texas. Alvarado is visually impaired. Alvarado came to the Valley Association for Independent Living (VAIL) in Pharr, Texas, for employment services. He stated that he had previously worked as a driver at a nursing home, but due to his vision problems, he could no longer do that type of work. Alvarado said he would be interested in doing light duty work such as janitorial or cleaning work, preferably something indoors.

Alvarado was instructed on job searching strategies and was advised on proper interviewing techniques and appropriate dress attire for interviews. VAIL also assisted him in filling out applications.

Alvarado was hired at National Service Direct Inc. (NSDI) Teleperformance in March 2002. He was originally hired as a part time employee, but because of his dedication and hard work he was offered a full time position.

Alvarado started at minimum wage and has since been given a raise. Since Alvarado was hired, NSDI Teleperformance has been through a change in management. Alvarado's strong work ethics, however, have helped him to remain doing a type of job that will not exacerbate his condition, and-most importantly-is one that he enjoys.