Kristen Logan, a single mother with three children, was laid off from her job as a hospital administrative assistant in late 2013. It wasn’t long before she started to panic. Logan had always been able to find office work in the past, but employment opportunities had become scarce in Merced, Calif., where she lives. “I started worrying about losing our home,” she says. At a friend’s suggestion, Logan enrolled in a 10-week “boot camp” that taught her how to navigate the online freelance market. A…

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