J. Esquivias first learned about the Palmer Pathways Pre-Apprenticeship Program from a nurse during his infant daughter’s checkup. The young family had recently moved to Washington from California and struggled to find a support system.
“My wife, young daughter, and I struggled with housing, not knowing how or when our rent would be paid,” he said.
After meeting with program advisors, Esquivias was able to sign on with the pre-apprenticeship program and qualified for supportive services such as rental, gas, and groceries assistance.
For him, the program was enjoyable, and he said he learned a lot.
“I enjoyed working outside and building things like the tiny house project,” Esquivias said. “I learned how to do drywall, electrical, roofing, and paint, and used new tools like the hack saw. Ken showed me how to use tools the right way. Even the hammer. I thought I knew how to use it before, but Ken showed me how to hammer the right way.”
Esquivias completed Palmer Pathways and is now enrolled in a union apprenticeship program with Ironworkers, Local 86, working full-time and making $29.95 an hour.
“I love the work I’m doing right now! I would always worry about the next time I could pay my rent or put food on the table, which is no longer an issue,” he said. “I no longer worry about providing for my daughter, especially during the upcoming holiday season.”
Learn more about the Young Adult Service Providers offered through WorkSource Pierce HERE.