CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Students with the Del Mar College Rebuild Texas Carpentry Skills Training Program will soon graduate.
However, finding a job after the program can bring challenges.
Del Mar College hosted its first job fair for these students in the program, so they can put their skills to the test.
Students with the program say the training has boosted their confidence and the skills obtained will help in the workforce.
“I love this and so growing up I was always told if you love what you do you'll never work a day in your life,” says Mario Velazquez.
At the Del Mar College Center for Economic Development, several job employers filled the area with many open positions.
These employers are seeking candidates from the Del Mar Rebuild Carpentry program.
Students from the program say learning the skill of carpentry is their passion.
“You get to see something start from nothing and then build itself into something that is useful and that can last for a very long time and to have a part of that and say I did that it's very self-fulfilling,” says Mario Velazquez.
The goal of the program was to get students trained in the skill of carpentry and to find them jobs.
Staff say these students are equipped with the skillset to make a difference and that’s because carpenters here in South Texas are scarce.
“They're people suffering from Hurricane Harvey, their homes have still not been rebuilt because there's not enough skilled labor there's people that want to rebuild their own homes and they can’t, so we have lots of students that want to help out in those areas,” says Project Manager of the Rebuild Texas Carpentry program Arnold Mendez.
Students applying for work share that they look forward to putting their hands-on training to good use.
“Just knowing that the future that's ahead of us and still continue to grow on what we've been taught and everything to know that there's still more knowledge out there to grasp to get out there you know the sky's the limit with it,” says job seeker Taylor Crafton.
Staff with the program say even though there are many people on the waiting list to join the next round of classes they still encourage everyone interested to sign up and apply.