Celebrating Education Works Champions

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A 2012 publication from the Workforce Planning Board of Grand Erie and the Education Works Alliance, with all stories written by me. Section went to 80,000 homes in Brantford, Brant, Six Nations, Norfolk County and parts of Haldimand County. Contains profiles of 19 residentswho are positive role models showing the value of education to others.

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Celebrating Education Works Champions

  1. 1. education WORKS Celebrating Education Champions in Our Community Education Works Alliance Special Section February 2012 Available at the following Bell stores: Two’s company. Ten’s a party. Brantford Sobeys Plaza West Brant Introducing the new Fab 10 plan. 519 756-9100 Brantford $ 35 /MO. • UNLIMITED nationwide calling to 10 lucky friends1 • UNLIMITED local evenings and weekends starting at 6pm2 Lynden Park Mall 519 756-6742 FAB 10 • UNLIMITED text, picture and video messaging3 Plus, get 200 anytime local minutes. Simcoe RATE PLAN Simcoe Town CentreBF65224089 519 426-4103 Tillsonburg Offer ends February 29, 2012. Available with compatible devices within network coverage areas available from Bell Mobility; see bell.ca/coverage. Long distance and roaming charges (including foreign taxes) may apply. Paper bill charge ($2/mo.) applies unless you register for e-bill and cancel your paper bill. Other monthly fees, e.g., 911 (Sask: $0.62, New Brunswick: $0.53, Nova Scotia: $0.43, P.E.I .: $0.50, Quebec: $0.40), and one-time device activation ($35) apply. Fees may apply for applications, features, content and roaming when outside your local area. Upon early termination, price adjustments apply; see your Service Tillsonburg Town Centre Agreement for details. Subject to change without notice. Taxes extra. Other conditions apply. (1) Applies to local and Canadian long distance calls and text messages made to and from ten numbers chosen by the customer. (2) Weeknights Mon-Thur, 6pm-7am; Weekends Fri 6pm-Mon 7am. (3) Sent messages include domestic text messages and exclude international, roaming, alerts, premium text messages and messages sent with an instant messaging application. Roaming messages include international GSM, CDMA and U.S. CDMA messages. Received messages include domestic, international, roaming and service-related messages 519 842-8811 from Bell and exclude premium, alerts or dial-up messages. Out of bundle charges may apply. Data usage charges apply for select CDMA smartphones to send and receive picture and video messages.
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  3. 3. education WORKS ALLIANCE ~ FEB R U A R Y 2 0 1 2 ~ Page 3Congratulate our Champions Wow. Are we impressed. and sometimes plain stub- When we, the Educa- bornness to achieve theirtion Works Alliance, calledfor nominations of people goals and dreams. Our Champions show that Our Championswho we’re calling Educa- anything is possible – a theme Here’s a list of the • Adrian Mezinskition Works Champions, we that runs throughout the sto- 2012 Education Works • Wendy McIsaacweren’t sure what to expect ries in the following pages. Champions you’ll • Kelly Misener We didn’t know how the It’s never too late to gradu- read about in the • Tracey Mwoyoswiyicommunity would respond ate. High school dropouts can following pages: • Katey Regoto this first-ever campaign finish their diploma; they can • Sami Akiki • Kevin Russellasking for positive role mod- even go to college or univer- • Chyvonne Evans • Keith Stephensels showing the value of sity. People are never too old • Ronnie Gerrard • Carrie Van Schyndeleducation and training. We to pursue the career they’ve • Bill Isherwood • Amanda Taylordidn’t know how many nom- always dreamed about. You’re • Angela Knight • Linda Wilsoninations we would receive. also never too old to become • Amanda Joseph • Amanda WylesAnd we didn’t know what an apprentice. • Betty Lewis • Terry Yeomankind of real life stories we Losing a job doesn’t endwould hear. a career; it creates a new But w e’re impressed. opportunity. Being the firstBlown away, in fact. in your family to finish Grade We got exactly what we 12 or go to post-secondaryhoped for – and more – is something to be proud of.in the 19 nominations we Adding new skills throughreceived: truly inspirational continuing education makesstories about amazing peo- you a better person and canple, many of whom have enhance your career. Life-beaten the odds to achieve long learning can be fun.their dreams. Stories about The Champions’ storiespeople who show that Edu- also show that there are acation Works. lot of helpful, caring people, Join us in congratulating organizations and educa-the 2012 Class of Champions. tional facilities in our com- Our Champions range in munity, ready to assist peo-age from 19 to 60. Many of ple every step of the way tothese Champions have had achieve their potential. Helpto overcome huge hurdles is just a phone call, email orto achieve their goals: lack visit away.of money, job losses, fam- We hope the stories inily issues, personal chal- the following pages – sto-lenges, lack of confidence, ries about our neighbours,and more. co-workers, acquaintances, They didn’t let these things friends and peers – willstand in their way. inspire people in our com- They showed courage, per- munity to realize they can doseverance, resourcefulness it, too. photo by: Mark Skeffington Changing your life is simple. It begins with health care training at Medix Brantford Campus 519.752.4859 Classes starting soon, enroll today! BF65223657 Community Service Worker 39 King George Road medixschool.ca Developmental Service Worker Intra Oral Dental Assistant Medical Office Assistant Personal Support Worker Pharmacy Assistant
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  5. 5. education WORKS ALLIANCE ~ FEB R U A R Y 2 0 1 2 ~ Page 5 Education Works: Who we are The Education Alliance members include:Works Alliance’s goal • Brant Brantford Roundtable on Poverty • Grand River Community Health Centreis to build “prosper-ity through training, • Brant County Economic Development • rand River Employment and Training Geducation and lifelong • Brant County Economic Development (GREAT)learning.” Advisory Committee • Grand Valley Educational Society The Alliance, a broad • Brant Haldimand Norfolk Catholic District • Haldimand Countycommunity partner- School Board • Laurier Brantfordship, is committed to • Brant Skills Centrehelping raise the edu- • Literacy Link South Centralcation, literacy and • Brantford Brant Chamber of Commerce • inistry of Training, Colleges and Mskill levels of adults in • Brantford Public Library UniversitiesBrantford, Brant, Six • City of Brantford – Economic Development • Mohawk CollegeNations, New Credit, and Tourism • orfolk County Tourism and Economic NHaldimand and Nor- • City of Brantford – Social Services Developmentfolk. It’s all about helping • Community Resource Service (CRS) • St. Leonard’s Community Servicespeople achieve their • County of Brant Public Library • School College Work Initiative, Grand Riverpotential. • Fanshawe College -- Simcoe • Six Nations Polytechnic Why is this our goal? • Grand Erie District School Board • United Way of Haldimand and Norfolk As the stories in • Grand Erie Immigration Partnership • Workforce Planning Board of Grand Eriethese pages show, edu-cation and training isa key pathway for peo- The Education Works Alliance and the Education Works Champions campaign has receivedple to build success- financial support from these organizations:ful careers and lives.Education and train-ing is also the pathwayto build the skilled,resilient workforce theeconomy of today andtomorrow requires. We k n ow t h e va stmajority of future jobs will businesses and workforces are built on people. It’s all munity identified a need for a regional education strat- Education Works Tae McIntosh, Tae Photography For more information on Educationrequire post-secondary edu-cation of some kind: college, linked. “We firmly believe we egy. This ongoing initiative has Champions section Works Alliance and the Education Works Champions campaign, please contact:university, trades train- can increase the prosper- been supported by the Min- This Special Section was created by the Education Works Alliance. Workforce Planning Board of Grand Erieing, other training. In short, ity of our community one istry of Training, Colleges 1100 Clarence St. S., Suite 103B, Box 12,the more the better. More person at a time,” says Betty and Universities. All stories written by Brantford, ON N3S 7N8education and training Anne Jackson, co-chair of Alliance members come Mark Skeffington, the Education Works Alli- from education, literacy 519-756-1116increases a person’s future Workforce Planning Boardprospects. ance. groups, economic develop- admin@workforceplanningboard.org We also know that hav- The Alliance grew out ment, libraries, employment of Grand Erie www.workforceplanningboard.orging a well-educated and of an Education Taskforce services, business and com- Photographs: The Education Works Alliance welcomestrained workforce is crucial formed by the Workforce munity organizations across Jaymie Nelson Mark Skeffington, new members. Please contact the Workforceto a community’s success. Planning Board of Grand the Grand Erie area. Workforce Planning Board Planning Board of Grand Erie.Successful communities, Erie in 2010, after the com- Family Owned Operated for 40 Years PHIL McCOLEMAN • Sales - Service • Repairs - Installations • Drain Sewer Cleaning • Gas Piping Installations • Pool Heaters • Fully Licensed Insured MP Brant • Gas Electric Water • Water Treatment • Licensed Backflow Heaters Systems Technician BF65224088 BF65224090 Phil.McColeman@parl.gc.ca 118 COCKSHUTT ROAD, BRANTFORD • 519-753-6363 www.philmccolemanmp.ca
  6. 6. education WORKS ALLIANCE ~ FEB R U A R Y 2 0 1 2 ~ Page 6 Taking steps to succeed Katey Rego, Amanda Tay-lor and Angela Knight are all Early Childhood Educator (ECE) program at Mohawk ning a household. Having taken so manytaking steps to be role mod- College. positive steps already on herels for their children. “I want to show my daugh- path to be an ECE and work “I want a better life for my ter that education is impor- with children, Amanda feelschildren and I want a bet- tant. I want her to see me more positive and self-con-ter life for me,” says Katey, as a role model,” she says. fident.expressing a common theme “I also wanted to achieve itfor all three women. The Brantford residents (Grade 12) for myself. It felt really good to finish.” Angela Knighthave all participated in the Although Amanda has After years of volunteer-Steps to Success program always had dreams and ing at her children’s school,offered by Ontario Works goals, they didn’t seem Angela decided it was timeBrant. The program helps reachable. for her to resume her ownpeople set goals and take Participating in the Steps education.steps to achieve them, offer- to Success program helped The 36-year-old parenting advice and support all Amanda set goals and make of three has had to over-along the way. their achievable. The pro- come many obstacles, but Katey, Amanda and gram focuses on goal set- is on the verge of complet-Angela all identified goals ting, timelines, problem ing the Education Assistantto resume their education, solving and starting to move program at Mohawk Collegebe role models for their in the right direction. this spring. Angela’s deter-children, and put them- Step 1 was completing mination to achieve her goalselves in a strong position Grade 12. Step 2 was obtain- has impressed the peopleto start careers. Now, they’re ing Second Career fund- around her.achieving those goals, one ing to pay for her schooling. Angela finished second-step at a time. Step 3 was going to college. ary school and completed Step 4 was completing the one year at Toronto’s GeorgeAmanda Taylor first semester. Step 5 will be completing second semes- B row n C o l l e g e b a ck i n 1995. She moved to Brant- Amanda, 28, feels moti- ter. There are more steps to ford when family membersvated to achieve at educa- come. became ill. Years passedtion, both for her own sake Steps to Success, fam- and Angela’s own educa-and her 8-year-old daugh- ily and friends have kept tional goals got pushed toter. Amanda moving forward on the background, as she had In the last year, Amanda the right path, helping her a family and coped withhas completed her Grade 12 overcome barriers along the many challenges. photo by: tae mcintosh– she dropped out earlier at way, handling financial con- Amanda Taylor (left) and Angela Knight see education as a stepping stone to a better life.age 16 -- and enrolled in the cerns, raising a family, run- Continued on next page Proud to be a member affiliated with the Education Works Alliance Congratulations to the Education Works Champions Mayor Council Brant County BF65219479
  7. 7. education WORKS ALLIANCE ~ FEB R U A R Y 2 0 1 2 ~ Page 7Steps to Success a big help Why education matters Education • eople with Pfrom previous page Katey Rego plays large role in a higher levels of education Still, the thought of Sometimes it takes some- everyone’s life generallyd o i n g m o re w a s a t t h e one believing in you before and career. earn moreback of her mind. “I guess you believe in yourself. Whether money.I knew I wanted to do That’s part of Katey’s you work for someone Education is perhapsmore than I was doing,” story. or work for yourself, more important than evershe says. Katey, 26, believes in her- education will help you before, as the job market The principal of her chil- self more and more each find a job, build a career, and economy changesdren’s school, where she day as she gets closer to her r u n a b u s i n e s s, e a r n a in O ntar io, Canada andhad volunteered almost Grade 12 graduation this living, raise a family, and around the world.daily for years, told her she June. find personal satisfaction. Forecasts show thatcould do the same kind of Staff at the Steps to Suc- When hiring, employers 7 out of 10 jobs will soonwork and get paid for it. c e s s p ro g ra m b e l i e v e d look at two main things : re q u i re p o s t-s e c o n d a r y Soon, through Steps to in Katey and helped her previous experience and credentials of some kind:Success, Angela mapped believe in herself. The pro- education. The more you trades certificates, college,out her goal of becom- gram gave Katey someone have, usually the better university and professionaling an Education Assist- to talk to and set goals, and chance you have of being designations.ant and obtained Second hired. Employers see Employers are looking now she is putting in theCareer funding to attend education as an indication f o r m o re h i g h l y s k i l l e d hard work to achieve those of whether a person has theMo hawk – retu rning to goals to have a better life for and educated employees. knowledge and ability to do In fact, some employerseducation after being away her and her children, aged a job.for 16 years. 7, 5 and 3. are already having trouble At t i m e s, A n g e l a f e l t The difference between Education also plays a finding the skilled, well-over whelmed by multi- going to high school years large role in the success and educated employees theyple challenges: raising her prosperity of communities. need. ago and now is like nightthree school-aged children and day, Katey says. Some facts about the Fe w e r a n d f e w e r j o b s(ages 8, 10 and 13), paying Before she never finished importance of education: require less than Grade 12her bills, no car or driv- a whole semester of school, • mployment E or even Grade 12.er’s licence, and personal had marks in the 60s, and opportunities are T h e E d u c a t i o n Wo r k sstruggles with self-esteem never applied herself. Now, growing for people Alliance was establishedand self-confidence. she puts in lots of efforts, with post-secondary to help our residents and Yet, she has stuck with attends regularly and has a education (college, community prepare for theit, and is achieving high 92% average. university, trades changing job market andmarks. “I’m more motivated now training). economy. Angela credits the Steps and I’m an adult. I take these • mployment E We want to help residentsto Success program, fam- things more seriously now. I opportunities are a ch ie ve th eir p o tentia l,ily, fr iends, classmates want to do something more shrinking for people with and have the education,and her children’s school with my life.” only Grade 12 or less training and skills neededfor being supportive every When she does graduate than Grade 12. to succeed. We want tostep of the way. in June, Katey will become • eople with less than P ensure Brantford, Brant, No w , f l u s h w i t h n e w the first in her family to get a Grade 12 have higher Haldimand, Norfolk, Sixself-confidence and a pos- secondary school diploma. unemployment rates Nations and New Credititive attitude, Angela is than those with more. prosper and grow. And she is already eyingready to share her enthu- her next opportunity, • n general, the I Ever yone has a role tosiasm for learning to reviewing post-secondary photo by: tae mcintosh unemployment rate play to help our communityencourage others to move programs to see what is the Katey Rego is motivated to do well in school because she drops as the education s u c c e e d a n d t o e n s u reforward in their lives. best fit for her. wants to be a role model for her children. level rises. people have good jobs. DONATE YOUR PAPERS WHILE YOU ARE ON VACATION When you call to suspend your delivery, why not consider donating the credit of those copies to our Newspapers in Education program. Whenever you go away — even if it’s just a day or two — help teachers spark discussion and build students’ skills by making your VACATION DONATION Call Reader Sales Service 519-756-2020 ext. 2269 BF65224087
  8. 8. education WORKS ALLIANCE ~ FEB R U A R Y 2 0 1 2 ~ Page 8Teacher gets her Grade 12 Wendy McIsaac is a Aid Society after grad-successful high school uating, but lost her jobteacher with three uni- when it amalgamatedversity degrees to her with the Norfolk CAS.name. With two children to But, strangely enough, support and newly sep- Ken Hewittuntil a few years ago, arated, Wendy neededWe n d y d i d n ’ t hav ethe secondary school a n e w c a r e e r. W i t h the encouragement of Haldimanddiploma she was encour-aging and helping her friends, she entered the University of Waterloo Mayor offersown students to get. “It’s so important to as a mature student. She went to Waterloo congratulationsget your Ontario Sec- full time, worked threeondary School Diploma,” jobs, raised her children On behalf of Haldimandsays the 56-year-old Eng- and got her Bachelor of County Council, may I takelish and drama teacher at Arts degree. this opportunity to offerNorth Park Collegiate. “It Later, when Wendy’s our congratulations to thiswas one of those things I two children went to year’s Education Works Alli-regretted not getting.” post-secondary school ance Champions. This wor- In 2006, Wendy themselves, she moved thy campaign promotesstopped regretting and to Newfoundland to get the value of education andproudly joined some of her Bachelor of Educa- training to residents in Hald-her own students in a tion. imand County, and helps tograduation ceremony. She then moved back ensure that our workforce “I actually gradu- to Ontario and started is well prepared in orderated with a bunch of my working as a teacher. to remain competitive andgraduates. It was crazy. I W h i l e t e a c h i ng, s h e prosperous in the future.got a standing ovation at completed her Master of This is indeed a very spe-the Sanderson Centre,” Education degree, work- cial and happy occasion, andsays the Nanticoke resi- ing as a night school we are pleased to share withdent. teacher, summer school Education Works Alliance, It was kind of a fluke teacher and even as a family and friends, in con-that Wendy ended up a telemarketer to help pay gratulating 2012 Educationteacher without com- off her student loans. Works Champions. Thesepleting high school. These days, Wendy outstanding recipients dem- She started her career continues to encourage onstrate that using learningas a Registered Nursing her North Park students and education as a tool toAssistant (now known to work hard, get their achieve personal and careeras Registered Practical Grade 12, further their goals is possible. Congrat-Nurse or RPN). At the education and achieve ulations on your successfultime, she only needed their dreams. And if efforts!Grade 10 to enter the students want to hear a With special thoughts andcollege program. real-life example of how wishes, photo by: tae mcintosh His Worship, Wendy worked at the it can be done, WendyHaldimand Children’s can tell her own story. Wendy McIsaac is a role model for her students at North Park Collegiate. Mayor Ken Hewitt AN EXCEPTIONAL STUDENT EXPERIENCE Whether you’re looking to study part-time or full-time, in class or online, Laurier Brantford offers a unique educational experience to help you reach your goals. Since 1999, Laurier Brantford has always been proud of our strong academic programs, our relationship to the community and our exceptional student experience. For more information on studying at Laurier Brantford, please contact Recruitment and Admissions at chooselaurierbrantford.ca, chooselaurierbrantford@wlu.ca or 519.756.8228 x5777 WILFRID LAURIER UNIVERSITY BRANTFORD | Waterloo | Kitchener | Toronto BF65223619
  9. 9. education WORKS ALLIANCE ~ FEB R U A R Y 2 0 1 2 ~ Page 9From dropout to award winner Ontario Scholar, schol-arship winner, award win-ner, college student – thesewords all describe Chy-vonne Evans. But it’s Chyvonne’s per-sonal stor y – a stor y ofdetermination -- that makethese achievement standout, especially since she wasonce a high school dropout. The 20-year-old singlemother of two young daugh-ters had to work incred- photo by: Mark Skeffingtonibly hard in a short periodof time to earn nine high Adrian Mezinski credits the SWAC program for getting him toschool credits so she could college. SWAC success storyobtain her Ontario Second-ary School Diploma and getinto college. Chyvonne attended theSchool Within A College Adrian Mezinski has He found a new sense of(SWAC) program at Mohawk become hooked on educa- direction when he enrolledCollege. Students earn both tion just a couple years after in the SWAC program, whichhigh school and college struggling in high school. offers both secondary schoolcredits through the alterna- Mezinski, 19, is in his credits and college credits.tive education program. She fourth semester of a Compu- He gradually went from sim-credits the SWAC program ter Sciences Software Devel- ply attending classes to par-for changing her life. opment program at Mohawk ticipating, and then working “There’s not even a word College. And he’s already hard to get high grades andto describe yow great that thinking ahead to his next sharing his enthusiasm withprogram is,” she says. “The education options: a univer- other students.teachers believe in you. They sity degree in digital design He especially enjoyed thetreat you like adults.” or courses in video game college courses and decided She also regained her self- design, music production, that’s where he wanted to beconfidence, something she photo by: tae mcintosh maybe even art. – in college.didn’t have much of when Chyvonne Evans is now motivated to succeed in school after earlier being a high school “I’m going to be a stu- “Without the SWAC pro-she dropped out of Grade dropout. dent for a long time,” he says, gram I’m not sure how I11. laughing. would have got to college,” “I definitely didn’t have especially since was the only semester. And she didn’t She also made the grade T h e B ra n t f o rd m a n ’s says Mezinski, now a strongmy confidence,” she says pregnant student in school. just pass – she aced it, being while raising her two daugh- enthusiasm is surprising con- advocate for the alternativeof her high school days. “I She tried one alternative named an Ontario Scholar ters, now aged 3 and 18 sidering he was floundering education pathway.gained it back and now I’m school but that didn’t work and receiving three awards: months, and dealing with in secondary school not too He has suggested SWACgood.” out either. Then she learned one as top overall student, to other issues. long ago. He was skipping to s e ve ra l p e o p l e, w ho After dropping out of about SWAC. business class student and a She has recently started classes, lacked motivation have signed up themselves.school, Chyvonne tried Chyvonne gave it her all scholarship award from the the two-year Office Admin- and focus, and didn’t appear “SWAC offers a different out-going back the next year. But and completed her nine Grand Erie District School istration Legal program at like he would graduate. He look and has a chance toshe didn’t feel like she fit in, high school credits in one Board. Mohawk. was seven credits short. help a lot of people.” • Resource and Information • Job Retention Support • Job Search Assistance • Labour Market and Career Investigation • Access to Funded Program • Service Quality, Outcomes Activity (Second Career, Self Employment) • Client Service Planning Co-ordination • Job Matching Placement Incentives • Employment Service Performance and • Apprenticeship Support Management BF65223544 The Employment Ontario project, program, or service is funded in part by the Government of Canada.
  10. 10. education WORKS ALLIANCE ~ FEB R U A R Y 2 0 1 2 ~ Page 10 Learning has no age limit At age 59, Terry Yeo- dating prospect,” he saysman is living proof it’s now looking back. “Inever too late to gradu- hadn’t been in school forate. 40 years. But it is one of Ter r y recently com- the best decisions I everpleted the College and made.”Career Preparation pro- Te r r y f a c e d n u m e r-gram at Mohawk Col- ous challenges along thelege’s Brantford campus, way. With money tight,earning marks of 94 and he had trouble paying83 in his two courses. rent, buying food andThat earned him class getting to school withoutvaledictorian honours. a car. Then there was the photo by: Mark Skeffington Terry decided to go a stigma of being the oldest Sami Akiki has put in hard word to improve his reading andstep further and get his student in class – some- writing.Grade 12 equivalency by thing he was able to getpassing his GED (General used to. PracticeEducational Develop- Ter r y is thankful hement) test. He even com- had family, friends, class-pleted a post-secondary mates, teachers, the Brantcourse with a 90% mark. Skills Centre and Ontario No t b a d , e s p e c i a l l y Works he could rely onconsidering the Brantford for continuous encour- paying offresident only had one agement.high school credit to his While having a Gradename when he started. 12 education wasn’t so Terry had a long career important when he wasas a printer before things young, Terry realizes it iswent off the rails in 2008. a must in today’s world.He lost the job he had “Now you need a mini-held for 22 years, he lost mum of high school forhis mother, and got into absolutely everything,” Sami Akiki hasn’t let chal- and be patient.”financial straits, forcing he says. lenges with reading and It’s advice that Sami, 22,him onto Ontario Works These days, with his writing stop him from pur- has taken to heart himself.to get by. new education and new suing his dreams. He has put in a lot of prac- But his misfortune self-confidence, Terry is The Brantford man has tice time, attending classesalso created an opportu- looking for a job. He is worked incredibly hard on three times a week at thenity. He met people who attending workshops on improving his skills, bringing Brant Skills Centre (formerlywanted to help him. resume writing and job his reading and writing up called the Literacy Council Terry was referred to interview skills. He hopes to a level to enter the Child of Brantford and District),the Brant Skills Centre potential employers will and Youth Worker diploma which helps adults improve(then known as the Liter- be impressed by the hard program at Mohawk College their literacy and essentialacy Council of Brantford work and determination last September. skills. He also put in tremen-and District), where staff he’s put in to become “I was never that great at dous amounts of time atsuggested he take the better educated. reading and writing in high home to study and improvecollege and career prepa- A n d Te r r y ’s a f i r m school. You’ve just got to further.ration program. believer that if he can do photo by: tae mcintosh keep practicing,” he says. “It was a very intimi- it at his age, anyone can. Terry Yeoman believes you’re never too old to complete Grade 12. “Never give up, keep going Continued on next page BF65223947
  11. 11. education WORKS ALLIANCE ~ FEB R U A R Y 2 0 1 2 ~ Page 11 Second Practice Career payingmeans second off from previous page chance Sami completed vocabu- lary booster books, learned strategies to improve his grammar and writing, and was introduced to essay When Bill Isherwood lost ing and Design Certificate in writing. He also learnedhis job in 2008 he was dev- 2010. Mechanical drafting how to write essays andastated. had been a subject he had reports on a computer – But then, after a little enjoyed back in high school a skill he needed for hiswhile, the 53-year-old real- but had never pursued. course -- using Microsoftized it was an opportunity Bill graduated with top Word.to change careers and pur- honours in his Mohawk pro- Sami has put in the extrasue something that had gram, with an average of time while juggling hisalways been at the back of 97% -- no doubt proof it was course work and workinghis mind. meant to be. at his family’s gas station “Even though I didn’t see Now, Bill works in his new and convenience store init as an opportunity at first, field as a CAD Technician at Brantford.losing my job allowed me to Matrixx Specialized Trailer All along the way, Samireturn to school to update in Brantford. has been able to rely onmy skills and pursue a career Bill knows he was more the staff at the Brant Skillsthat I had always wanted,” fortunate than many others Centre to help him over-Bill says now. “I have noth- who lost their jobs. His wife, come any difficulties thating but good things to say Sharon, worked full-time have popped up. His sup-about my learning experi- and he received a severance portive parents have alsoence.” package from his previous been cheerleaders all The Brantford man was employer. along.working as a service tech- Still, it wasn’t easy. Bill’s Sami wants to even-nician for printers and pho- young son started elemen- tually become a policetocopy machines, when the tary school at the same time officer. He earlier took therecession hit and he lost his as he started college, and he Law Enforcement Founda-job. had to juggle taking care of tions program at Everest Because of his layoff, his son with his own stud- College, a private careerBill was able to obtain Sec- ies. Bill credits the support college. Taking the Childond Career funding to go of his family for helping him and Youth Worker pro -to Mohawk College, where achieve his dream of a new gram gives Sami, who alsohe obtained his CAD/CAM career. c o a c h e s f o r t h e B r a n t-(Computer Aided Design/ “I am proud of myself. ford Bisons youth footballComputer Aided Manufac- Now I’m doing what I’ve photo by: tae mcintosh program, another careerturing) Automated Machin- always wanted to do.” Bill Isherwood used the Second Career program to start the career he always dreamed of. option. • Resource and Information • Job Retention Support • Job Search Assistance • Labour Market and Career Investigation • Access to Funded Program • Service Quality, Outcomes Activity (Second Career, Self Employment) • Client Service Planning Co-ordination • Job Matching Placement Incentives • Employment Service Performance and • Apprenticeship Support Management BF65223544 The Employment Ontario project, program, or service is funded in part by the Government of Canada.
  12. 12. Page 12 education WORKS ALLIANCE ~ F E BR U AR Y 2012 ~ Page 13 BF65223673
  13. 13. education WORKS ALLIANCE ~ FEB R U A R Y 2 0 1 2 ~ Page 14Trailblazer for her family Congratulations from the Mayor As Mayor of the City of Brantford, and on behalf Amanda Joseph ground to make up. of my Council colleagues,celebrated her 30th I would like to extend my Initially, she juggled sincere congratulations to thebirthday last year by night school and day-timebecoming the first of 14 outstanding people in our courses, and added more community who have beensiblings in her family to get and more courses as shetheir Grade 12 diploma. nominated for Education Works went along, including Champions. “It makes me feel pretty some university-level ones.awesome,” Amanda says of Amanda succeeded in all of We wantgraduating. them, even as she devoted to publicly time to being a wife and re c o g n i z e Si n c e t h e n , A ma n d a’s each andhappy that one of her mother. every onebrothers has followed Amanda also explored her of you whoher example and is now opportunities with GEL A have usedworking to finish his Grade staff. She worked at GELA learning and12. “It was really nice to as part of a co-operative education asbe a leader, to get the ball education placement, a pathwayrolling,” she says. helping the administrative to achieve Chris Friel The Six Nations woman team. personalgraduated from Grand Erie Meanwhile, she was and careerLearning Alternatives - a model student for her success. We are proud toCity Centre Campus, Adult peers, starting a homework acknowledge that we haveEducation as valedictorian, and tutorial group to help 15 nominees who are beingas voted by her classmates. other students study and profiled as Champions in the Amanda had impressed succeed. City of Brantford.her fellow students so GELA staff saw Amanda I would also like to extendmuch, that the y p i cke d move from a quiet, my thanks to the Educationher for the honour, which introspective adult student Works Alliance for yourusually goes to the top t o a m o t i v at e d s u c c e s s on-going commitment tostudent in a school. She story: a positive role model our community. You havefelt “gobsmacked” to be for her own children and to demonstrated a commitmentchosen. others, someone who has to raising the education, literacy It was a well-deser ved beaten the odds to graduate and skill levels of adults inhonour for Amanda, whose secondary school. Brantford, Brant, Six Nations,ha rd w o rk , at t e n d a n c e, These days, Amanda is New Credit, Haldimandleadership, high marks and working on her art work and Norfolk to broadenclassroom involvement also and a book, but would like opportunities for employmentimpressed her teachers. to go to university to study and build prosperity. Amanda showed her philosophy. Again, my sincerecourage by signing up for She believes other people appreciation andadult education after being can achieve the same goal congratulations to all theaway from the classroom she did, especially if they nominees.for almost 15 years. The are willing to work hard Sincerely,mother of two boys, aged and persevere. “Don’t give10 and 13, started with only up,” she advises. “No matterfour credits towards her how hard it is, no matterOntario Secondary School how hard you feel it is, just photo by: tae mcintoshDiploma, so had lots of keep on going.” Amanda Joseph feels “pretty awesome” after completing her Grade 12. Chris Friel Vibrant, prosperous, welcoming communities. — This is our vision. Working together to support newcomers in Grand Erie. BF65224091 www.workforceplanningboard.org/immigration

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