At the end of September, we celebrated the graduation of the second Cornerstone Construction Training class. All thirteen graduates completed the course with both their OSHA-10 and NCCER certification, and with job offers in construction in hand. “I didn’t know a chance like this could be real,” shared Josh, one of the program graduates.

Josh was released from prison in June of 2019. “While I was in prison, I didn’t imagine I’d have any problem finding a job once I was out,” he shared, “Honestly, I thought that that would be the end of my troubles.” Unfortunately, he quickly learned that was not the case. “For weeks, I got the door slammed in my face. I was eager to find work, but I couldn’t even get an interview at McDonald’s.”

Josh’s parole officer encouraged him to look into CityLink. “Things moved very quickly after that.” Josh attended an Info Session and learned about the construction training program. “It was really close to the start date of the class, but once people knew I was interested, they worked hard to move me along quickly.” Josh started the course the following week.

“I was skeptical at first,” he admits, ”By that time, I was pretty discouraged by my situation. “I didn’t think it was possible to find a place that had more solutions than I had problems.” To his surprise, our partners were there to help him overcome each of his barriers.  Through the Cincinnati Health Department, Josh received glasses and dental care. With the help of St. Vincent De Paul, Josh was outfitted with professional attire. Thanks to SmartMoney, Josh was able to access financial counseling and get approved for a vehicle through the ChangingGears Bridge Program. “I had help with every one of my problems. I know there are so many people working together to help me. I appreciate every bit of it. I am so grateful.”

Before graduation, Josh accepted his job offer at Sexton Industrial. We are so proud of him and all the construction graduates. Thank you to our incredible partners, volunteers, and referral agencies who make stories of second chances like Josh’s possible.

The next Cornerstone Construction Training Class begins in February 2020. Learn more information by checking out their website https://www.cornerstoneconstructiontraining.org/ or giving us a call at 513-357-2000.