A New Horizon

Leaving high school is a major life transition. For Kiren, the thought of leaving high school and entering into adulthood caused some major anxiety. He struggled with the pressure of school, attendance, and limited support at home, so he dropped out.

“I got to a point senior year and it really hit me hard. Like man what am I going to do with my life? I just stopped going to school for like half a month and my father wasn’t really home, so I couldn’t call him because he was at work.”

We often hear from our clients that barriers like lack of support and education have shaped their life in one way or another. After leaving high school, Kiren and his father decided that he should expand his horizons and experience a new culture, which brought him to the Dominican Republic. Kiren lived there for about four years and decided that he needed to go back home to Baltimore, so that he could start planning for his future. He started working at Amazon for a few months then began searching for his next opportunity, that’s when he found JARC.

Kiren was introduced to welding by his grandfather, who used to be a JARC Baltimore welding instructor. During his time in the program Kiren felt that the simulated work environment was really helpful. “Once you get in the workshop you get to know the tools really fast…It kind of teaches you what it’s going to be like in the real world.”

Kiren mentioned that learning even some of the fundamental skills, like how to read a ruler and how to simplify the calculations was really useful. He also said that having support from the job developer helped ease some of the pressure one he graduated from the program.

After participating in the CMP, welding program for five months, Kiren was able to earn four different certifications in welding and started to work towards earning his GED. He recently earned his GED and was hired at DEJANA Trucking Company for a Welder 1 position. Kiren is excited for his career and his future, he wants other trainees to know “You should get into a trade because at the end of the day, nobody can take your certs away. You earn them and that’s something you can always be proud of.” Kiren hopes to continue traveling one day, and see other countries because he got so much out of living in the Dominican. “My dream one day, is to weld in Paris.”