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Job seeker's efforts pay off in time for Christmas

Richard Bishop volunteered to keep his computer skills sharp while he looked for a new job.

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Richard Bishop, of Raleigh, was out of work for 14 months. The computer-aided design engineer was laid off in October of 2008.

In June, he told WRAL News about how he was volunteering at a computer refurbishing company to keep his skills sharp.

That dedication paid off this week when he finally heard the words: “You're hired!”

Bishop will be doing computer work for Advanced Micro Devices in Orlando. He’ll work from home on a six-month contract beginning in January.

“Praise the Lord, it worked out,” he said.

“No one hires in December or January, so it must be the Lord taking care of me. I'm just grateful.”

Through more than a year of unemployment, Bishop never gave up hope. He and his family got by on their savings, his unemployment benefits and thrifty budgeting. He said they reaped the benefits of saving and living within their means.

He advises those still looking for work to learn new skills, join a job-seeking group, network and stick with it.

“Keep your skills sharp, especially technical (skills). Be as current as you can,” he said.

While Bishop was out of work, he volunteered at the Purple Elephant, a company that refurbishes computers in Raleigh.

He got spiritual support and job search advice from a group at Colonial Baptist Church in Cary.

Bishop also joined the online networking site, LinkedIn. A former colleague saw his profile and steered him to the job opening at AMD.

He said he is both nervous and excited to go back to work. He described the contract as a really good fit.

“I will be working with a team on graphics processing units (GPUs), the parts that do the 3D graphics processing and rendering for personal computers and for high-end virtualization.”

For Bishop, his wife and two teenagers, it made for a perfect Christmas gift.


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