For 20 years, Effie Hightower-Thurman performed her job without a college degree. She worked in accounts receivable, most recently for international insurance firm Marsh. What she lacked in formal accounting education, she made up with experience. But in May 2009, she was instructed to train her successor, based in India. Then she was laid off, and hasn't worked since. But she doesn't have a bachelor's degree in accounting, which knocks her out of contention for most jobs, she said. So in addition to daily job seeking, she's trying to get a leg up through training. She said she applied with the Trade Adjustment Assistance program, a federal program that helps workers whose jobs have been outsourced. Hightower-Thurman hopes she'll qualify for $20,000 in funding, which she could use to go to college and earn an accounting degree. "We're barely managing," she said. "I'm hoping something happens every day now." Get the full story.
Michael Tercha, Chicago Tribune