San Diego Job Corps graduate Clarence Washington recently received his Completion of Apprenticeship at the Bricklayers And Allied Craftworkers Local 4 of Southern California’s office in La Mesa, Calif. Washington graduated in 2008 after completing Job Corps’ Bricklaying Career Technical Training Program, and immediately began work as a first period apprenticeship.
“Clarence was a good student who completed the program faster than most students,” said San Diego’s Bricklaying instructor Pete Camarda. “He was hired by a masonry company in Vista, CA when he graduated from Job Corps. Clarence served most of his apprenticeship at Vic Ross Masonry in San Diego. He continued to improve his skills while learning all aspects of the trade.” Camarda said that Clarence received very good evaluations from all of his employers during all seven periods of the apprenticeship. “His receiving the Completion of Apprenticeship reflects his hard work during the past few years,” he added.
Washington is currently employed by Masonry Concepts and is helping to build a new airplane hanger at Naval Air Station North Island, Coronado. A native of Shreveport Louisiana he moved to San Diego in 2008 and learned about career opportunities at Job Corps. “I had worked at several jobs prior to moving to San Diego, but they were unskilled, minimum wage jobs,” Washington stated. “Once I enrolled in the Bricklaying trade I realized how much I enjoyed it. Pete is a great teacher who has also become a good friend. He helped me continue my apprenticeship with Local #4, and I’m grateful to him, the union, and Job Corps for helping me get started in my profession.”
“I tell my students that being a bricklayer is very physically demanding hard work,” said Camarda, who has been in the bricklaying industry for nearly 30 years. “I’ve taught at Job Corps for 13 years and Clarence is one of our many graduate success stories.”
The National Job Corps Program, administered by the U.S. Department of Labor was created in 1964 and has become the nation’s largest career technical training and education program for low income young people ages 16-24. Nearly 3 million young people have graduated from the 125 Job Corps centers located throughout the United Sates, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.
“Clarence is the type of person that Job Corps serves,” Camarda said. “Given the opportunity to acquire both academic and career technical training skills, young people like Clarence can be very successful in their careers.”