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Student Spotlight: How Microsoft & QuickBooks Career Training Changed My Life



The job search isn’t a one-size-fits-all experience—not everyone is starting off searching for a career straight out of college. Sometimes, the job hunt comes later in life when it’s least expected. This is exactly what happened for one stay-at-home mom in Southern California who lost her spouse—the breadwinner of the family—and was suddenly launched back into the workforce after two decades off the job.

Juggling Family Obligations and Training

Two years ago, Elizabeth Nguyen was at a crossroads. Nguyen had been a stay-at-home mom for years
and was suddenly faced with the need to return to the workforce to financially support herself and her family
after her husband died. It was a daunting task, and she didn’t know where to start.

“From staying home for more than 10 years—and then my husband passing away—I was kind of depressed,
because I wasn’t confident to go out and get a job,” she said. Twenty years earlier, she’d worked in IT, but she
felt that working in the field full-time would be too demanding for her current lifestyle. Although the unemployment office referred her to a workforce development program, it unfortunately set Nguyen off on a rocky training journey.

Nguyen started out by signing up for medical billing training, but she had to back out of the class because
its schedule didn’t work with her daily obligations to her family. Then, Nguyen settled on accounting, an industry in which she believed it would be fairly easy to find part-time work. However, the workforce development program told her that accounting was a dying industry and advised against it. When she insisted, the program sent her to a school far from home, which disrupted her family obligations, so she left yet another program and began to wonder what the future would hold.

Online Training for a Busy Mom

A year ago, Nguyen’s sister mentioned New Horizons Career Development Solutions to her as “an excellent place to get your education.” Having completed classes designed to help her seek employment as an SQL software developer, Nguyen’s sister is currently pursuing certification with New Horizons Career Development Solutions.

Inspired by her sister, Nguyen reached out to the program, where Nancy Rosales, a New Horizons Career Development Solutions education adviser, helped her design a customized training program, which she pursued entirely online. Nguyen liked having flexibility to complete her training online and said she appreciated that New Horizons Career Development Solutions is located so close to her children’s school, in case she ever wants to attend classes in person. She also said she loved how responsive and helpful the teachers are.

“New Horizons Career Development Solutions is so wonderful,” she said. “I couldn’t have gotten the training done without the online classes, materials, and teachers, who have a lot of experience, so they can answer your questions right away.”

Nguyen’s courses so far have covered Microsoft Office—including Access, Word, Excel, Outlook, and PowerPoint—and the accounting software QuickBooks, which has helped her pick up some fundamental accounting skills along the way. 

Securing a Career in Bookkeeping

With the help of another sister, who is also an accountant, Nguyen was able to secure a job as a junior bookkeeper for International Trailer Services (ITS), a California-based tractor supply company that is strategically located near key distribution points across North America and covers the full range of tractor-trailer sizes, types, and options. “Without New Horizons Career Development Solutions training, I wouldn’t be able to do this job,” she said.

Setting an Example with Professional Growth

As a busy working single mother, Nguyen strives to set an example for her children. She wants to take everything she’s learned at New Horizons Career Development Solutions and eventually get promoted at ITS to a position where she can make an even greater contribution to the company.

Nguyen’s advice to anyone going through what she went through is to do what she did: Consult a workforce
development program, create a plan, and don’t sacrifice the precious time you have with your family. She
recommends finding a location to train—or a program that offers online classes and flexibility—and, most
importantly, working with a company like New Horizons Career Development Solutions.

“I would recommend New Horizons Career Development Solutions to anyone that I know,” she said. “I myself
will go back to them if I need training later.”

Get Started with New Horizons Career Development Solutions

If you’re interested in IT career training, whether to break into a new technology field, refresh your credentials, or update your skills to advance your career, New Horizons Career Development Solutions is here to help. We offer a broad range of career training programs designed to help you get to the next level so you can achieve your career—and life—goals.

Contact us today to learn more about the best career training options for you, and see how we can help you become the model modern employee for a growing, changing technology job market.

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