Written by Sandra Kleinsasser

December Ask a Mentor blog imageMy peer mentor is very generous with her time and advice, but I need more help building my skills and managing my job search. Can you suggest no-cost resources online or locally?


We’re glad you’ve made a connection with a volunteer WCA mentor, a great added value for our members. And we’re happy to pass along some local resources that you can pursue on your own.

Here are a few no-cost suggestions from some members of our mentorship committee. Mix and match according to your needs and goals.  Best of luck with your job search!

  • Check out WCA committee Freelance Austin. Their monthly programs feature topics relevant to the business of being a freelancer: getting and retaining clients, managing a small business, marketing, legal issues, tax tips, motivation, creativity and more. No charge if you are a WCA member.
  • Visit Workforce Solutions Center, a private, publicly-funded non-profit organization that offers a full calendar of classes on resume writing, job search and interviewing at North, South and East Austin locations.
  • Consider Austin SCORE, which offers freesmall business counseling and resources, low-cost business workshops, free mentoring and online tools.
  • Learn by doing by volunteering with organizations you support to learn new skills in a supportive environment. That experience will look good on a resume.
  • Use LinkedIn to search for contacts in your network who can help you with specific questions or introductions to companies.

In addition, some of our members suggest joining a club or forming your own to create an environment of support and accountability

Here are a few of the many, many, many meetups, clubs and networking groups in Austin to get you started. Some of these groups charge membership or event fees, but we’ve included them to give you an idea of what is available.

  • Launch Pad Job Club and its founder Kathy Lansford Powell. A 501(3)c non-profit, the club presents free weekly meetings that provide programs, motivation, and job search information, presented by Launch Pad organizers and guest speakers,   The group also has a number of specialized “clublets” for areas like nonprofits or marketing.
  • Austin Content Meetup organized by WCA mentor Jenny Magic. With more than 850 members, this meetup group tackles topics ranging from content strategy and marketing to responsive web design, web content management, copywriting and user experience. (Some fee events, some free.)
  • Austin Job Seekers Network at Hill Country Bible Church. Networking, training and encouragement.
  • Women in Technology. (Membership fee)
  • Greenlights Open to anyone including but not limited to students of the nonprofit sector, individuals new to or exploring a career transition into the nonprofit sector, and nonprofit practitioners between jobs. (Membership fee)
  • Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (Membership fee)
  • Network after Work, Austin chapter. A networking company with monthly mixers in 40 cities. (Event fee)

We hope these resources are helpful and we’ll be back with more, so share your favorite resource if we’ve missed it.