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Retirees get back into the work force

Posted January 23, 2009
Updated March 9, 2009

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— The economic downturn has forced many retirees back into the work force. Several programs in the Triangle are available to help get them back into the job market.

“I retired in 2002, but found I had to go back to work,” Roxanna Evans said.

Roxanna Evans is taking classes to become an activity coordinato More retirees going back to work

Evans, 68, found she didn’t have enough money to stay in retirement. Through the Plus 50 Initiative at Wake Technical Community College, Evans is studying to be an activity coordinator for a long-term facility.

Wake Tech Dean of Community Projects and Education Martha Williams oversees the Plus 50 Initiative, which helps retrain older students for the job market.

Williams said interest in the program is up.

“They are concerned that perhaps what they have planned on for their retirement won’t carry them through,” Williams said.

Many retirees have watched their savings fall away with the stock market. Cary Senior Center Supervisor Jody Jameson said investing and computer classes have waiting lists at the facility.

“They have seen a big hit in their retirement funds,” Jameson said.

The Cary Senior Center is designed for those 55 years old and over. Cary citizens do get preference over people from other cities. No membership fees are charged, but some classes have small fees.

State Employment Security Commission Deputy Chairman David Clegg said senior citizens account for 14 percent of the North Carolina job market.

“The median age of North Carolina’s labor market is getting older,” Clegg said.

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