For Spencer Brooks, the Home Building Program offered through Cathedral High School has led to opportunities that he could never have anticipated.
The Home Building Program is a joint offering of the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board and Habitat for Humanity that offers students a chance to test the skilled trades as a pathway option while still in school. Not only has Spencer been able to earn credits towards his high school diploma and obtain certificates of training needed for industry, but was to gain valuable ‘hands on’ learning by exploring a variety of careers in the construction trades.
The Home Building Program provided Spencer, a student at Wilma’s Place, with an opportunity to learn the skills performed by construction trade workers, including framing houses, and installing windows, shingles, insulation, drywall, fences, as well as other tasks, said teacher Pat Piro. Moreover, the experience allowed him to build a network of contacts and mentors, who have helped him to determine his interests and hone his skills as a woodworking craftsman.
Through the HWCDSB’s Home Building program, Spencer was placed at Baresa Kitchens, where he was recently signed up as an Industrial Cabinetmaker apprentice through the OYAP program.
“Students can participate in OYAP as a high school co-op student working in a trade where an apprenticeship is possible,” said OYAP Coordinator, Leo Paone. “ Spencer made the most of his opportunities and learned a multitude of new skills, all while attaining a hard working attitude.”
“This apprenticeship will provide him with a rewarding career and a successful standard of living.”
An apprenticeship is a paid learning pathway that allows students to ‘earn while they learn.’
Said Spencer: “It’s a dream come true, I’m excited to be starting my career sooner than I expected."