In honor of National Women in Construction Week, please join us in supporting our scholarship fundraiser as we raise money for Local 104 District 1 Sheet Metal Apprentices in order to help them afford a new pair of work boots.
We have been inspired by the stories of four women in the industry who have helped by sharing their experiences. Through their perseverance, determination, and gratitude for their boots, we have learned about the impact boots have had in their lives.
Jennifer, a fourth-generation sheet metal worker and a fourth-year apprentice, is the perfect example of someone who has the tenacity to get through any situation. When Jennifer was in her first year as an apprentice, her husband was deployed; she balanced raising two children while working nights as a bartender to put food on the table. Since she started her career, she has received certifications for seven different weld materials. On top of this, she made the Coordinators list for the Local 104 news in November 2020 and has remained on this list since then. On her own time, Jennifer tutors women who are in their first year that need extra help. Jennifer is an exceptional example of a woman who embodies hard work.
Staci is quite a success story at her company. Looking back at her first year as an apprentice, Staci emphasized how difficult it was to make a career change into the sheet metal industry as a lot of money has to be laid out early on. The cost of the tools, safety equipment, and work boots added up very quickly. Five years after Staci began her apprenticeship, she became a journeyman. Staci was recognized for her successes in large jobs and her ability to fearlessly approach tasks head-on. Staci’s determination and “get it done” attitude led her to become the Service Manager at her firm today.
Sarah, a fifth-year apprentice at her firm, discovered her love for welding at a young age. She has certifications in welding and has dedicated a copious amount of time and focus to get her where she is today. When asked about her boots, Sarah expressed her appreciation for everything they have helped her accomplish. “The last thing I would take care of was my feet since I was focused on putting food on the table and paying rent,” she said. “The right pair of boots makes a difference.”
Layna, pictured in our GoFundMe cover photo, is a third-year apprentice at her firm. She studied communications at UC Davis and was influenced by her father to go into the trades. Layna has worked on various architectural jobs, soldering, and round duct, and is working on getting certifications in structural welding for sheet metal, stainless steel, and aluminum. Layna emphasized how her boots are extremely important to her and that they have a special place in her heart. When Layna received her first paycheck, she immediately went out to purchase her first pair of steel toed boots. Layna quotes “To this day, I am still using the same pair of boots I bought two years ago at the beginning of my apprenticeship. They are definitely my partners in crime”.
These success stories have encapsulated how important this fundraiser is to women and men who are starting out in the industry. They showcase the importance of perseverance, determination, and gratitude. The lives of these women were greatly impacted when they began their apprenticeships with a new pair of boots. With your donations, you can touch the lives of those similar to Jennifer, Staci, Sarah and Layna.
We are so grateful for any contribution you are able to make during this time. Please follow this page to stay updated! To help get the word out, please share this link to your Facebook, LinkedIn, or other social media pages! Together, we can give back to the women and men who are building our industry!
- Kathy de Jong
- CODY leppanen
- Dawn Hahn
- BandC Rivera
- Linda Shinshiro
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