“Come to Job Corps with an open mind. At times, you’ll need to be a leader and a follower. Follow the good habits you see. Decision-making is everything, and you’ll have to learn how to stand on your own two feet and protect your future.”
After graduating from high school, Alex worked at Walmart, JCPenney and a Vietnamese restaurant. He quickly realized he wanted more out of life. He didn’t just want a job; he wanted a career.
“I felt like I wasn’t living up to my full potential. I wanted to do something different and find something with longevity, so I could create a future for myself.”
Alex learned about Job Corps after having a conversation with his mother and grandmother. His grandmother attended Job Corps, and they both encouraged him to invest in his future. It was time to make a change.
While at Jacksonville Job Corps Center in Florida, Alex trained in heating, ventilation and air conditioning. He excelled and was selected to do the Advanced Manufacturing Production Technology program sponsored by Johnson & Johnson Vision. Thanks to the partnership with J&J Vision, students like Alex are training with top-of-the-line robotics equipment to prepare themselves for successful manufacturing careers. The partnership ensures students are prepared for interviews and life outside of Job Corps.
“When you’re involved with an organization, you have to be a selfless individual. You can’t procrastinate, and you need to be proactive. [SGA] taught me how to consider other people’s opinions, time management, and I got to exercise my mentorship skills.”
Alex was actively involved on campus and participated in a few extracurriculars, including the basketball team and the Student Government Association (SGA). He served as the sergeant at arms and activities director in SGA. Alex planned different events for students, including a field day, bingo and sports tournaments. He also worked on center as a member of the Facilities Maintenance team. Alex learned about responsibility and how to be a leader through his extracurriculars.
Job Corps exceeded Alex’s expectations because he was able to network and build relationships with students and staff. The workload was challenging at first; but over time, he improved his critical thinking, problem-solving and decision-making skills.
Alex’s resilience and drive paid off. Today he works as a process technician at Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, where they manufacture contact lenses. His advanced training at Job Corps taught him the skills he needed to work for Johnson & Johnson Vision, making him a qualified candidate and allowing him to secure the position. In the future, he hopes to become a Level 4 technician. Alex is also passionate about continuing his education and would like to attend college.
Job Corps works with employers like Johnson & Johnson Vision to establish training programs that serve as direct feeders for the company and create relationships that improve training and benefits for students. Johnson & Johnson Vision impacts the students’ training while forming a pipeline for new employees.