After endless trolling through career Web sites such as Monster.com and never connecting with a human, Charlene Helm snapped.
"Everyday was a constant battle," said Helm, a May 2008 graduate of Appalachian State. "I was so frustrated I just typed in 'I need a job'."
And there at the top of the list was www.damnineedajob,com a Web site designed by Larry Dinsmore of Lexington, Ky., which offers T-shirts with the Web site name on the front and your resume printed on the back .
The site didn't land the 23-year-old get a job but helped all the same.
"It just kind of put some humor in the situation," said Helm, a marketing major who has found a job working part-time at a non-profit in South Carolina since she discovered the site last year.
The site was actually born out of frustration, said Dinsmore. In 2005, he went some 18 months without a job. He created the site thinking he might make a little money selling T-shirts and show off his technical skills since he was looking for a job in the computer field. As luck would have it, a local television station profiled the guy, someone home sick from work saw the piece and, yes, he was called to come in and interview. After the regular round of interviews, he got a job at Kentucky League of Cities.
Then the site languished for a few years. But when the economy started to go south, he found himself touched by the people who found it. His traffic is up 30 percent to 40 percent from its peak, he said, which followed an appearance last summer on CNN.
Many people come to the site in the same way Helm did. They type in "I need a job" into a search field.
"To me," said Dinsmore, "that's kind of an act of desperation."
The site that he kept us a lark has become somewhat of a mission because of the e-mails he gets from people laying out their plight or asking for advice.
"I do see the impact that the economy is having on real people," he said. He let's people know he's not a professional career counselor but tries to be sympathetic and constructive is his e-mails.
"It sounds kind of cheesy," he said, "but if it provides somebody with a moment of escape in a dismal time" the site is worth his effort to keep it current.
Read the full story at Kentucky.com