Ebonee, Apprentice 1 – Pioneer Industries

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“When I was released from prison, I knew I needed to apply myself to a career I loved that challenged me. The Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee (AJAC) program pushes me to get closer to my full potential.”

A product of a broken home, Ebonee was already living independently on the streets of Seattle by the age of 12. The need for money, food and shelter drove her into learning the street trade of hustling and surviving. Through it all, she made a commitment to herself to stay in school and always seek more learning opportunities.

After several years in the juvenile justice system, treatment programs and group homes, Ebonee started work at Pioneer Industries. She left to go to college to get her AA in business. After her graduation she landed a few good jobs, but when she was unfairly let go of her last position, her life started to unravel and she found herself resorting to old habits and hanging out with the wrong crowd. She was soon arrested and ended up in prison.

Upon her release, she was sent to the Helen B. Ratcliff House, a work release operated by Pioneer. She aggressively went after a job at Pioneer Industries again and was eventually hired in deburring parts. After several months, Ebonee had learned about every machine she could get her hands on and she applied for the AJAC manufacturing apprenticeship.

“I figured if I committed myself to a life of self-destruction in the past, I could now commit myself to a positive lifestyle and conquer this program. When I graduate, I will be the first journeywoman from Pioneer. I am very blessed and elated to have such an opportunity. Although the program is predominantly males, I don’t feel a need to compete. I am focusing on my own success so I can excel.”