What brought you to the MAKERSHiP Project?
I lost a job that I had for over 24 years. I was making very good money, but I left without any specialized training, skills, or a degree, which has made it difficult for me to find another job. I applied for an apprenticeship with the Sheet Metal Union but I wasn’t accepted into their program. The Sheet Metal Union suggested I apply for the MAKERSHiP Project. I see this as a way to develop some skills that will make me more marketable.
What classes have you taken?
I’ve explored a lot of classes because I recognize this as an opportunity to learn new things. I’ve taken the laser cutter class and have done many projects using that machine. I’ve also taken metal shop classes and some welding classes. I want to get some basic skills so I can come in and try things to see if I like them.
I’ve also taken sandblasting and powder coating classes that have allowed me to take my metal projects further. I made wind chimes using techniques I learned in the basic metal working shop class and experimented with powder coating them.
What have you made? What do you plan to make?
Most of my projects have involved the laser cutter. I’ve been making custom glassware to commemorate events for friends and family. I’ve made vases and picture frames to celebrate holidays and birthdays and they are always a hit. I also make glassware to promote my work as a comedian.
I’d like to learn to manipulate images better so I can improve my designs. I have plans to create more wind chimes, and I have a bistro set I’d like to sandblast and powder coat. I’m unemployed but I can still create!
How do you envision using the digital manufacturing skills you learned in the MAKERSHiP Project in your career?
I’m not sure what my next job will be. I’m open to any career that could develop from the skills I’ve been learning. That’s why I’ve explored so many different classes here at TechShop.
I’m also working with the MAKERSHiP staff and a career counselor to explore all my options. I’ve set some goals for myself and what I want to be able to achieve after this project. But for now it feels good to be able to make things and be creative as I learn.by