New Orleans’ Eddie Addison Named NJCA Grad of the Week
July 18th, 2012
Republished from NJCA Facebook Page:
Job Corps Graduate of the Week
by The National Job Corps Association on Tuesday, July 3, 2012 at 1:06pm •
In honor of Job Corps’ 2012 National Commencement day in August, the NJCA interviewed a Job Corps graduate who has demonstrated what doors Job Corps can open if you apply yourself and work hard!
Home State: California
Year enrolled in Job Corps: 2010
How would your Friends Describe you: Positive, gives good advice, always there for his friends.
Eddie enrolled in the New Orleans Job Corps center in 2010 at 24 years old. One of the oldest new enrollees, he used his age as an advantage and managed to stay focused, achieve his goals and set an example for the younger students at the center. One year later, he is gainfully employed and thanks Job Corps for helping him secure a stable, successful future.
As high school graduation steadily approached, Eddie remained uncertain as to what his future would hold. However, as a child he had a passion for building and fixing things, so he decided to enroll in a carpentry class during his final semester. This decision ended up launching his future career.
“I took a carpentry class at a crucial time in my life,” Eddie said. “I started to really enjoy the class and thought to myself, ‘Hey, I can do this for the rest of my life.’’After high school graduation, Eddie began working in construction with a goal of securing a permanent carpentry position by age 26.
“It’s hard at the beginning because you always want success right away,” Eddie said. “But if you stay committed and apply yourself, when you finish the reward will be great and it will change your life.”
As an older Job Corps enrollee, Eddie knew he needed to set a good example for the younger students. Every time a new group of students joined the program, he was there to welcome and mentor his younger peers. Eddie encouraged the students to work hard and take advantage of this opportunity to lay a solid foundation for their future.
“I joined [Job Corps] when I was older, more focused,” Eddie said. “Everyone looked up to me; they saw me going to class and talking positive. I knew I was setting a huge example.”
The New Orleans Job Corps staff recognized how committed he was and asked him to represent the center on numerous occasions. He was one of two students chosen to represent the New Orleans Job Corps at a Job Corps convention in Utah. He was also interviewed along with the centers’ business and community liaison on a local news channel to help promote the New Orleans Job Corps.
“The staff members treated me with a lot of respect,” Eddie said. “They really looked out for me and saw I was serious about focusing on myself, and they really supported me.”
After passing the test that would qualify him to join a union, Job Corps helped Eddie join the 1846 local carpenters union. Because of the education Job Corps provided, he was able to enter an apprenticeship program as a level two apprentice. Today, he is a level three apprentice and is looking forward to rising in the ranks.
“I can support myself financially and I thank Job Corps for that,” Eddie said.
Eddie recently set a new goal to become a homeowner by the time he turns 30. He knows that if he continues on his current career path that will be another goal he can check off his list. He’s proud to call himself a working, productive member of society and can envision a successful future. Eddie is an example of why Job Corps works—not just for America’s youth, but for the economy as well.
“Job Corps is helping the economy by educating young people, helping them get jobs,” Eddie said. “Job Corps is an investment in young people. If they are able to get jobs, they will be able to spend their money, creating more jobs.”