Vt. Photographer Joins Effort to Provide 10,000 Free Headshots for Job Seekers

People who are unemployed or underemployed were grateful for the help sprucing up their online resumes

NBC Universal, Inc.

Headshot photographers in New England and around the country are using their talents and keen eyes to help job-seekers during the pandemic—by giving them a way to spruce up their online resumes.

"You wouldn't buy something on Amazon without a photo on it," Montpelier-based photographer Paul Richardson said. "So why would an employer not want to see your photo? They want to see who you are; get a sense of who you are before you walk in the door."

Richardson, who operates a business called Storyworkz, was in Burlington Wednesday taking free headshots for job seekers.

Anthony Kalosieh said he wanted one for his online resume.

"I'm looking for a managerial role," said Kalosieh, who added that he had to shut down the small distribution business he owned because of losses from COVID-19. "I think it should help me find something, with a nice professional headshot."

Richardson explained he is part of a professional network of headshot photographers.

Two hundred members of the group nationwide agreed to provide 50 headshots each, booking the appointments through Headshot Booker.

That will mean 10,000 freebies across the country, each aiming to boost people left unemployed or underemployed during the pandemic.

"I hope stuff starts opening up," said Caley Wilson, who is looking for a new role in healthcare after telling NECN and NBC10 Boston her position was cut.

Wilson, who said she has needed headshots in the past for brochures she had to produce, indicated optimism that a headshot could really make her LinkedIn profile pop.

"For me, I've never had professional pictures taken, and I noticed in my last job it would've been really helpful to have some," Wilson said.

Getting a free service that would normally be $200-300 for a full session sure is something to smile about, job-seekers said, even more so if it helps a digital resume grab the attention of hiring managers.

"If we can help one person get a job out of doing all this from one day, to me that would be huge," Richardson said.

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