Success Stories

Kyle, Class of 2016

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Kyle earned a job as a welder thanks to Workshops for Warriors connections

Kyle was stationed in Camp Pendleton during his four years in the Marine Corps and wasn’t sure what the future would hold once he was finished with his service, but he knew he was ready to get out of the military and start a career. Like many veterans, he took the path of community college and didn’t feel it was a good fit.

“I didn’t know what I was going to do, I just knew I wanted to get out and do something I would enjoy. I did the whole school thing and went to community college at Southwestern for a year, but that was it. I took some classes and then got tired of that and thought ‘I don’t want to do this anymore’ and that was it.”

It was around this time that Kyle’s dad started talking with him about getting certified in some sort of trade, which is how Kyle ended up getting interested in welding.

“I did an online search because my dad was talking to me about doing some sort of trade like an electrician or plumber, so I was looking at the trade schools in San Diego and there were a bunch. This kind of gave me an idea of what’s out there and what kind of trades there are and I thought welding sounded interesting.” He added, “A couple of links down the page was Workshops for Warriors and I noticed it was for veterans, so I sent an email, came here, and started my class.”

During his first semester at Workshops for Warriors, Kyle was working early morning hours at UPS. He said he would be exhausted when he was finally able to come to class, which sparked one of our instructors to actually refer Kyle for a job as an electrician’s apprentice here at Workshops for Warriors.

“Hernán came down and talked to [the instructors] about a job and they threw my name out there. They were showing me all of this stuff and asked if I wanted to be an electrician’s apprentice, so I learned a whole other trade and that is now another thing under my belt.”

Kyle worked at Workshops for Warriors and went to school at the same time for almost a year, and then took a break from school and worked full time. Now back in classes, Workshops for Warriors helped Kyle earn another job, this time using his skills as a welder at Pacific Coast Iron.

“[Workshops is] probably the biggest reason I got my current job. It’s all about what you know and who you know, and they definitely used their connections to help me get a job. I think my boss mentioned to Hernán that he needed a welder so he came down and asked me if I wanted to be a welder with him. So we came up, had a meeting, and I was hired.”

Kyle has taken Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAWB), Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW), and Gas Tungsten Arc Welding Basic (GTAWB) and plans to continue to keep coming to Workshops for Warriors because he is still new within the industry and wants to learn as much as he can. He plans to take at least two more courses, Flux Core Arc Welding (FCAW) and Tungsten Arc Welding Intermediate (GTAWI).

“I definitely am using the skills I learned at Workshops for my current job. I hear all these people talking about going to school and they get this degree and then they don’t actually do what it is they went to school for. Right here I went to school for welding and now I’m welding. It’s awesome.”

Kyle earned the following Nationally recognized credentials:

  • Shielded Metal Arc Welding Basic Vertical (SMAWB)
  • Shielded Metal Arc Welding Basic Overhead (SMAWB)
  • Gas Metal Arc Welding Basic Vertical (GMAWB)
  • Gas Metal Arc Welding Basic Overhead (GMAWB)
  • Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW)