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The Valley Apprenticeship Connections (VAC) wrapped up their 2023 program with a graduation ceremony for the third group of students. This graduation highlights the students’ dedication and efforts throughout their 12-week journey in the program.

Among the graduates was Brian Cortez, an individual who had encountered numerous obstacles before enrolling in the program.

“I’m at the point in my life where I’ve been through so much and nothing is going to stop me.”

As the provider for a family of four, Cortez aims to secure a stable future for his loved ones. The VAC program provided him with the necessary tools and skills that will lead him to a career he’s worked so hard for.

“I show up everyday with a positive mindset and ready tp learn, the VAC staff really are supportive and you can tell they love what they do and that means a lot because it makes me want to work harder,” said Cortez.

During the graduation, Brian’s wife and mother attended, proudly displaying a sign that show just how much they support him.

More than 25 students, each with a unique story, successfully graduated in this cohort.

Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer was the keynote speaker giving the students a message about how making mistakes makes you the person you are.

“We all stumble and fall, but it’s in the recovery and the commitment to shaping a brighter future that define us,” expressed Mayor Dyer, resonating with the hopeful graduates.

The Fresno EOC Valley Apprenticeship Connections program addresses the hiring needs of Central Valley’s construction contractors.

Students undergo a thorough 12-week training program, attending sessions from Monday to Friday between 7 am and 3 pm.

The training encompasses various aspects, including self-evaluation, soft skill development, construction math, and valuable networking opportunities with Union Trades and Associated Builders and Contractors Inc.

The 12-week program will return in January with a new set of students.

For more information on the program or details on how to sign up, click here.


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