Providing for your family while dealing with employment obstacles is a lot to overcome. Scraping by while trying to build a better future for your children can spread anyone thin. But accepting the situation for what it is isn’t the only option.
This is a story about a father who saw the potential for a brighter future for his children and used that optimism to find a different path toward a better career.
Our Father the Hero
Jason is a single father in Lincoln County who wanted to further his career and create a better life for his family. One day, he found himself facing new challenges affecting his employment, and thus his ability to provide for his kids. He wanted to find a new career path in the industry he loved that would turn things around.
He made the wise move to look for assistance in his area. The Lincoln County Child Support Agency helped him connect with local employment resources. They referred Jason to Laura Zoul, one of our Child Support Liaisons in Merrill, who spoke with Jason about his immediate needs and obstacles he faced and helped him map out where he saw himself going. He was determined and optimistic but just needed a little guidance.
Lift Us Up Where We Belong
Since he had experience in construction, Laura recommended he enroll in the Worker Advancement Initiative (WAI) to benefit from employment services specific to his interests. Emily Lukacs, a WAI Specialist, listened to Jason’s story and connected him with training that he was excited about.
In partnership with WAI, Nicolet Technical College offers a Heavy Equipment Operator training, where participants can learn how to operate large equipment and vehicles to earn their certification. Jason enrolled right away, and WAI paid for both his classes and a stipend to support his family while in school.
Certified #1 Dad
After the eight-week course, Jason did not just earn a Heavy Equipment Operator certificate. He also earned certificates for Forklift Operator and OSHA-10. These new tools elevated his resume (and confidence!) in searching for a new job. Soon after completing the training, Jason was charged to prepare for an interview in the industry — and he ended up landing it.
He now works as a full-time Heavy Equipment Operator for a road construction company. For the first time in a while, he is excited for a future of doing what he loves while providing the best he can for his kids.