“The first morning I was amazed at the technology that my classmates utilized and that they were completely blind. It was really cool to be a part of that.” – Masceo Williams
Masceo (pronounced May-cee-o) Williams talks fluidly, with energy, as if he were singing a fast and rhythmic song. No surprise to learn that he is an extraordinary singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who has been performing and recording his pop, jazz and rhythm & blues influenced songs for more than 20 years. He also happens to be low vision which is why he came to us.
Born in Seattle, Masceo, who just turned 40, lived in various places around the U.S. before settling in the Bay Area in 2012. He was looking for a way to improve his strategy for finding work that would pay the rent while supporting his continuing musical efforts. His Department of Rehabilitation counselor, Sky Ntxwj, referred him to the LightHouse Employment Immersion program.
Before attending LightHouse’s Employment Immersion class, Masceo had never participated in any blind and low vision training and didn’t know anyone who was blind. In the past he felt he had enough vision to manage and wasn’t aware of the resources and camaraderie he was missing out on. But getting to know and hear about the lives, challenges and successes of his LightHouse classmates was a revelation. He said, “I like to inspire and to be inspired and this has been going on since day one of the class. I found that I had a lot in common with these folks and it opened my eyes. Hearing the stories of the other students and interacting with them has helped me to persevere.”
Employment Immersion Program Coordinator Justine Harris-Richburgh told us, “Masceo made strong connections with the other blind adults in the class, something he has not had a chance to experience before. Although his career goals were extremely specific to music, he kept an open mind and was able to explore other professional possibilities outside of music. He was able to figure out what his transferable skills are and the best ways to make them work for him, in partnership with his vibrant personality and networking skills.”
As part of his class work, Masceo created a resume template that will serve him for musical and non-musical work opportunities. He also worked on his confidence as it applied to the jobsearch. “I’m a confident person, but I needed to improve in terms of how to talk to potential employers.”
Justine alerted Masceo to a job opening for Camp Counselor at Enchanted Hills Camp. Even though the position wasn’t specifically music-centered, he interviewed and was hired by Camp Director Tony Fletcher. He is currently a Nature Area Lead counselor and absolutely loves it. He coordinates and leads campers in nature walks, hiking, fishing, archery and other outdoor activities, making sure to bring his musical training into the job by leading the campers in song.
He said, “Thanks to the Employment Immersion class, now I’m always thinking of ways to add to my ‘toolbox’ of job experiences. While I continue to work on my music career, I’m also thinking of getting certified as a lifeguard which will make me an even more valuable in an outdoor setting.”
We warmly welcome Masceo to Enchanted Hills Camp.
Listen to Masceo’s music.
Join our Next Class
Are you ready to take the next step to finding that great job? Our next class begins Tuesday, August 26, and you still have time to enroll. Don’t wait, contact Justine Harris-Richburgh at 415-694-7366 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Kate Williams at 415-694-7320 or email@example.com.