It was 2009 and Sammy had no high school diploma, a lack of employment history and was on his way to becoming an emancipated young person. He was looking for direction and support to help guide his steps to gain employment and complete college. It was through this search that got Sammy connected to Tree Trust’s JobPrep programs.
Sammy’s first step was to gain work experience and employment skills. He did this by participating as a crew member for the Young Adult Conservation Corps (YACC) from March through August 2013. In YACC, Sammy completed his OSHA 10 certificate, while learning how to use power tools as he worked on multiple landscape improvement projects. The next summer, Sammy worked at Centerbrook Golf Course as a crew member through the Summer Youth Employment Program. He learned how to build both a paver walkway and chain link fence, while earning a raise and a positive evaluation from his supervisor.
As he became a dedicated, hard worker and learned a multitude of job skills, Sammy achieved his next step and obtained his GED certificate. With help from Tree Trust staff, he applied to six colleges, filled out the FAFSA, prepped for and took the ACT, toured college campuses, and eventually enrolled at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.
Before he left for school, Sammy officially became an emancipated young person. With no parental support, Sammy looked to Tree Trust for help. With the assistance of Tree Trust, Sammy was able to find on campus housing, get a laptop for classes, and get help paying for college textbooks and other school supplies. Sammy started his freshman year of college in fall of 2013, however he had to leave school shortly after to earn money to pay for tuition. The confidence and employment skills he gained with Tree Trust allowed Sammy to apply for and get hired at numerous jobs, on and off campus, after leaving the cities to attend school in Wisconsin.
Now 25, Sammy recently started college again, this time at Chippewa Valley Technical College, and continues to work closely with his Tree Trust case manager. His excellent communication skills, positive attitude and motivated personality are all great attributes he has gained throughout his time at Tree Trust and thereafter. Sammy is determined to complete his college degree, maintain consistent employment, and hopes to one day become a Social Worker.