For a recent high school graduate, navigating career choices can be overwhelming. And or employers, finding talent to meet their needs is a consistent challenge — particularly in the manufacturing sector, where the demand for a skilled workforce has grown significantly in recent years.
United Way is committed to creating opportunities for people to get and retain good jobs that pay family-sustaining wages and have opportunity for advancement. Many Connecticut employers have the need to recruit top talent. At United Way, we mobilize people across sectors to align employer and community needs.
In 2018, Victor Sosa graduated from East Hartford High School unsure of what his next step would be. “When I graduated high school, I didn’t know what I wanted to do, but knew I wanted to further my education,” said Victor. Enter the Entry Level Pipeline Program, which was a partnership between Pratt & Whitney, Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology (CCATT) and United Way.
United Way invested funds to support recruitment of participants; Pratt & Whitney covered training costs; and, CCAT managed the recruitment, training and placement of talent. We are proud to share that all participants were placed at the end of the program. Victor Sosa was one of those participants.
The program provides job seekers with hands-on manufacturing experience, industry-recognized credentials and connections to Pratt & Whitney internships that have opportunity for full-time employment.
With support from his mother, and guidance from a teacher, Victor decided to apply to the program. “I was told ‘this is your chance’,” said Victor. “And I like chances.” As a program participant, Victor attended classes at Asnuntuck Community College. He graduated the program last year and now holds an in-demand job at Pratt & Whitney’s East Hartford facility.
Victor works full-time as an Airfoil Cell Operator where he coats blades for jet engines. “The program changed my life,” said Victor. “It’s been an amazing opportunity not only for me, but everyone around me. I want to be able to better myself, better my community and better my family.”