Mary Archer is catching up with technology

Mary Archer gained the technology skills she needed to get back in the workforce through OASIS and the AARP Foundation.
Mary Archer knew how to use a computer. She handled the books for years for her husband’s office in San Antonio. But when she needed to go back into the official workforce, Archer, 58, discovered that time and technology had passed her by.
“During job interviews, people kept asking me if I knew how to use Excel and Word,” says Archer. “It didn’t take me long to figure out that if I was going to get a job, I was going to need those particular computer skills.”
Archer’s experience is common. Technology skills are increasingly needed by older adults today. Unfortunately, computer classes designed for general audiences don’t often meet the unique needs of older adults, leaving them frustrated and discouraged.
Archer turned to OASIS and the AARP Foundation in San Antonio for help.
AARP is one of several Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) agencies providing OASIS Connections classes for their participants who need job search and workplace technology skills. OASIS Connections is the most comprehensive curriculum designed specifically for older learners to help them build success, confidence and practical technology skills.
Sponsored by AT&T
The program is nationally sponsored by AT&T, which provides support to offer technology training through OASIS in 19 communities across the country.
It is very challenging to find the right job for someone,” says Eva Trevino Garcia, director of the AARP Foundation’s SCSEP program in San Antonio. “The computer classes are helping tremendously in preparing people so when they find employment it’s a job they can keep.”
“The older you get, the harder it can be to re-enter the workforce,” says Archer, who took courses covering the basics of Excel and Word. “The Connections classes gave us a lot of information and skills that we needed. It boosted my confidence considerably.”
Archer now works as a receptionist for the admissions department at Hallmark College of Aeronautics and enjoys the work, which does indeed require the computer skills she gained through Connections.

Meet more people involved in OASIS Connections