Margarita, Marine Corps Veteran, Welding 1 Graduate

by | Sep 20, 2023 | 2023, News & Media, Student Stories

“Being here has really been pivotal and transformative for me.”

Margarita is a San Diego native whose path led her to Workshops for Warriors. There she discovered her aptitude for welding and a community of veterans with shared experiences. In this blog post, we share Margarita’s journey from Marine to welder.

Growing up, Margarita remembers her childhood filled with moments of laughter, “although it was turbulent at times.” Following high school, Margarita worked in post-construction, cleaning upscale homes in Coronado. The work soon lost its allure, prompting her to seek a more meaningful path.

Finally, her aspiration for change led her to fulfill her dream of joining the U.S. Marine Corps, a decision met with skepticism from her mother due to her petite stature. She served as a Motor T at Camp Pendleton for three years until an unfortunate injury led to her medical discharge. “The transition was challenging,” Margarita acknowledges. “I went from a structured daily routine to feeling useless.”

Later, in late 2017, Margarita recalled a fleeting interest in welding. She searched online and discovered Workshops for Warriors. This is where Margarita’s journey from Marine to welder begins.

Female welder at Workshops for Warriors embedded in blog post Margarita's journey from Marine to welder“My first day at Workshops for Warriors, I was anxious,” Margarita admits. “I wasn’t sure what to expect. It was a little overwhelming. But once we got into the shop, everything started making sense.” Margarita explained that the supportive instructors at WFW eased her concerns. “Knowing I could approach any instructor for guidance made a huge difference.”

The camaraderie Margarita experienced among her fellow veterans and peers at Workshops for Warriors provided a sense of belonging. “Even on bad days, we go through it together,” Margarita reflects. The supportive WFW environment also proved instrumental in helping her navigate a difficult breakup. “Being here has really been pivotal and transformative for me.”

What began as a curiosity about welding has evolved into a genuine passion. “I ended up falling in love with it. I love seeing what I can do with welding,” she states.

Margarita’s future looks promising, with a job offer from Nikkiso, secured through Workshops for Warriors’ Employer Career Fair. Without reservation, the company even offered to hold her position while she trains in WFW’s Welding 2 and Welding 3 programs knowing her value as a future employee would only multiply as a result.

Reflecting on her journey, Margarita has a straightforward message for others considering a similar path. “You won’t regret it,” she assures her fellow veterans. Additionally, to her WFW instructors, she expresses gratitude, saying, “I really appreciate their support. They’re the literal best.” Finally, to other women contemplating Workshops for Warriors, she offers encouragement: “It is so worth it. I would encourage more women to apply here. This place is awesome.”

Margarita’s journey from Marine to welder exemplifies the possibilities that can emerge when individuals embrace learning and growth opportunities at Workshops for Warriors. Her story serves as a reminder that, with the right support, determination and resources, individuals can overcome challenges and establish fulfilling careers

To explore opportunities at Workshops for Warriors, get in touch with us and embark on your own transformative journey today.

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