Student Success Story
Paz Ramos: Wonder Woman Welder Becomes Her Dream
Paz Ramos has become her dream after completing the Career Pathways VESL Welding Technology Career Pathways Certificate Program at Mt. Hood Community College. A single mother originally from Jalisco, Mexico, Paz came to the United States in 1990 and held jobs as a farm worker and nursery worker. She states she is “thankful that I took the welding training because it prepared me better for the future, gave me open doors to go through, and helped me to be an example for my children.”
Only two weeks after completing her training here at MHCC, which included job readiness classes, she obtained a welding position with Sundial Marine. She was assisted in her job search by Sandra Siordia, Workforce Development Specialist at WorkSource Portland Metro East. About Paz, Sandra says: “She’s amazing! Although Paz came from a deeply disadvantaged background, she overcame adversity and is excelling in a traditionally male-dominated trade. She provides an example and an inspiration for all those who are equally disadvantaged of what it is possible to achieve.”
Paz demonstrates characteristics that contribute to her success. She is disciplined and persistent, and she has a strong desire to succeed. At work, she has trained other welders and is paving the way for future women welders. She feels that “every goal I want to achieve I try to reach it, even if it is difficult. I am self-confident and enthusiastic at work. I like my job and want to do it right. My next goal is to become a welding inspector.” Her persistence has truly paid off; it’s just a matter of time before she reaches her next goal in continuance of being her dream.
Click here to for video about the VESL welding program at MHCC.
Luis Cordoves: Machinist and CNC Operator
Luis Cordoves studied Mechanical Engineering in Cuba. Then he worked for several years overseeing the operations of a CNC (computer numerical controlled machining) shop in Cuba that made agricultural equipment used in the sugarcane industry. He immigrated to the U.S. in 2004. After coming to the U.S., he worked in building maintenance and remodeling, but then he was laid off. He wanted to earn a U.S. credential in his field, so he came to Mt. Hood Community College. He entered the Machine Tool Technology/CNC with VESL Career Pathways Certificate program in fall, 2009. Luis excelled in the program. Graduating in the spring of 2010, he conducted a successful job search and started working at Toyo Tanso shortly after graduation. He moved quickly through on-the-job training and now works in the CNC department where he does quite a bit of skilled prototype work. In 2011, Luis and his wife bought a house in Gresham. They have two children. It can be challenging for immigrants who worked in a skilled trade in their country of origin to resume their career after coming to the U.S., but, with the help of Mt. Hood Community College, Luis has accomplished his goal.
Click here for video about the VESL CNC Machine Tool program.