[Sponsored] Get back in the game: How local career coaches are getting people back to work


Sponsored by East Baton Rouge Parish Library

From blue collar to white, the spread of the coronavirus has impacted millions of jobs worldwide. In only six months, more than 60 million Americans filed for unemployment insurance. Businesses large and small have had to shift priorities and reduce staff. This strain is affecting nearly every industry, and people who have led successful careers up to this point are forced back in to the trenches of job hunting. Problem is, the hunt looks a lot different now.

Times have changed. Presenting yourself as an ideal candidate takes more finesse and tech savvy these days. Most applications are submitted online, interviews are conducted via video interview, and even the standard resume requirements have evolved. Diving back in can feel daunting, but Baton Rouge job seekers have access to assistance. Employees being laid off, furloughed or terminated, seeking new skills and responsibilities, new to the workforce, or even just looking to change careers can get free coaching from the experts at the Career Center at the East Baton Rouge Parish Library.

After a major local plant laid off a good deal of its workforce, Ursula Carmena approached the Library in 2003, recognizing the need for career counseling. These people needed assistance, and Carmena volunteered her time to set up and run the new center herself. The following year, the EBRP Library officially launched its Career Center, based out of the old River Center Branch. By 2008, the Library hired certified career coach Anne Nowak to run the Career Center on a part-time basis, and since then, the Career Center has grown to include Nowak and three full-time and two part-time staff members operating six days per week. Nowak employs tools like one-on-one sessions, seminars, assessments, use of databases, and pertinent literature to teach individuals how to become their own career managers and make them more resilient to career setbacks and layoffs.

The Career Center is not an employment agency or a job training agency. It is a free public service offering trained and professional help and extensive resources to identify your needs while planning a career path and conducting your job search. Call (225) 231-3733 or visit careercenterbr.com to schedule a free meeting with a career coach.



• Work with a career coach to develop personalized job search strategy.
• Receive assistance in writing customized professional resumes, cover letters and LinkedIn profiles.
• Learn how to develop a more effective networking strategy.
• Access to job board with current job leads.


• Prepare with mock interviews, both live and remote.
• Tips for crafting answers to commonly used interview questions.
• Private Library meeting rooms and laptops are available for online (Skype, etc.) interviews.


• Career choice and formulating career goals.
• Online assessments.


• Career Center seminars keep participants ahead of the competition.
• Subscribe to the Career Center’s YouTube channel for helpful tips in videos uploaded twice a week.

Anne Nowak


Anne Nowak is a certified job and career transition coach, Academy-certified resume writer and certified to administer the Strong Interest Inventory. She has headed the Career Center since 2008. Before joining the Career Center, Anne spent several years in human resources, most recently as HR Planning Manager for an international management consulting firm. Anne received a Bachelor of Arts from Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa, and a Master of Arts from the University of Bonn in Germany. Nowak built a talented team with two certified professional resume writers on staff as well as a certified career development facilitator. Their backgrounds before the Career Center are diverse, enabling them to assist in careers like teaching, ministry and higher education. In 2019, the Career Center won the Exemplary Career Center Award from the National Career Development Association.

Take advantage of this free public service and get help and resources to conduct your job search. Call (225) 231-3733 or visit careercenterbr.com to schedule a free meeting with a career coach.