Free To Learn
Denver Public Library Resources For People Who Have Served Time in Prison or Jail
Looking for a job is hard; looking for a job when you have a felony conviction on your record is even harder. But don’t be discouraged. You can be successful with the right tools and information. These pages tell you how to find job openings and apply for jobs. They cover everything from identifying job skills to creating a resume to writing a cover letter – and they contain special information for people with felony convictions and arrests.
- How to Identify Job Skills
- How to Complete a Job Application
- How to Find Job Openings
- How to Write a Resume
- Resume Template (doc)
- How to Write a Cover Letter
- How to Ace a Job Interview
- Quick Reference - Job Search for Ex-Offenders (printable PDF)
Dealing With Your Record
Some people assume that no one will hire a person with a criminal record, but this just isn’t true. People with felony convictions get jobs every day – including people who have been through the library’s Free to Learn program. It all depends on how you talk about your conviction with prospective employers and how you present yourself. These pamphlets tell you how to clean up your record and how to explain your record to prospective employers. They also explain some federal programs designed to encourage businesses to hire people with a criminal record.
- How to Respond to the Felony Question
- How to Obtain Your Rap Sheet
- Federal Bonding Program and the Work Opportunity Tax Credit
Labs for Women: The library operates a Free to Learn computer lab that is exclusively for women who have criminal records. The lab is open every Wednesday from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Community Technology Center (CTC) on Level 4 of the Central Library. The lab is staffed by librarians and volunteers who are specially trained in helping people with records find a job and learn computer skills. The lab is a safe and supportive place for women to come to check email, work on a resume, look for a job, learn new computer skills, or just relax and surf the Internet. No need to make an appointment for the lab; just show up!
Labs for Men: Unfortunately, the library does not currently have the funding for a computer lab that is specifically for men with criminal records. We are working on this. In the meantime, we invite you to use the general computer lab in the Community Technology Center. The CTC is staffed with helpful librarians and volunteers, and you can choose from an array of classes to participate in.
Denver has a ton of resources for former felons – everything from free computer classes to mental health counseling.