The EDA Family always advocates for opening the doors to opportunities that give individuals access to different career paths; through Reboot Construction Services, our apprentices are creating the change we all wish to see.
What motivated you to pursue a career in construction?
I just started getting into construction a year ago, I walked into my aunt’s house, and she had to refurbish everything. I had told her I like to work with my hands, and she found this program called CAP, a free pre-apprenticeship program. At the time I was trying to get back into school and I didn’t know how I was going to pay for it, working at Enterprise. I started the pre-apprenticeship program two days a week in three-hour classes and just before the class ended, I got hired.
How have you seen EDA work to promote the career opportunities in construction that contribute to increasing diversity?
Through CAP I got into the Union and they’re who set me up with Kodi Nixon and with Reboot Construction Services team, so having the Reboot program made it a lot easier to fit if you’re entering brand new to the industry.
After your apprenticeship, where do you see yourself pursuing work as a tradesmen?
I definitely want to end up on the field [as a carpenter]. In fact, I just got a chance to go out to a site with Khaleel and a few others from Reboot. We were posted with Khaleel for about a week, and it was so cool. It was just crazy how he went from teaching me on Zoom to now, we’re face-to-face and he’s showing me the ropes on the site.
What advice would you give to other black/African American tradesmen and women who want to pursue unique careers in construction like shop fabrication?
It’s all about networking. As soon as I met Kodi, he was like “Yeah, I wanna hire him” and the crazy thing is it’s such a small world, because Kodi is the foreman of one of my instructors from CAP, Khaleel Besselieu.