In January, Extollo was approached by an organization needing a masonry team to build a new school in a remote area of Haiti. They had been following Extollo’s training programs online and knew the reputation of Extollo’s graduates. Their hope was to put together a skilled team, able to build safe and strong buildings to international standards.
Following a social media outreach effort, nine applications comprising Extollo’s strongest masons were received. Extollo trainer Doris, seen here teaching students masonry at Extollo’s Port-au-Prince campus, was among the applicants. We are excited about this opportunity which will not only see our graduates employed but also be a chance for them to pass on their knowledge to others in Verrettes wanting to learn masonry and raise up the level of construction skills in this community.
Thank you for joining us in this effort. In a country with few jobs and little opportunity, you are making a big difference!
Thank you for supporting the Job Search Workshop we held in June - it was a big success! A total of 27 alumni attended, in addition to a few interested campus employees. Rose, a Human Resources Executive, gave a presentation about how to network, find job opportunities, prepare a resume and interview. Participants also engaged with two local area engineers in a Q&A about what they look for in a construction candidate when hiring. There are now plans to hold a follow-up workshop with additional job search content next year.
The trade school has also been actively engaging with Alumni online to grow membership in the Alumni Association Facebook page. Cell phone communications in Haiti can be unreliable and phone numbers change often. This page establishes a new communications channel to share information about events and job opportunities. Membership has tripled since last quarter.
This summer, we launched a tools survey, which 18 alumni completed. The survey tells us which tools our graduates need to help them find work, start their own business, do home repairs or help out others in their community. The tools will be offered for sale to students at a reduced price at a future alumni event.
A graduate of our welding program, Youwens recently took his skills to the next level as an entrepreneur, building ornate metal work over a garage. From start to finish he estimated, designed, fabricated, welded and installed the piece, employing all of the skills needed to start his own business. Thanks for helping to make this opportunity possible!
Finding work in Haiti is very challenging. There are few jobs and no online job boards. Work is a luxury for those who are well connected.
To help our alumni overcome these obstacles, we will be hosting a Job Search Workshop at the end of June. This workshop will teach our graduates how to network in their communities and uncover the hidden job market. Attendees will learn how to prepare a resume and portfolio tailored to the construction industry and they will learn how to effectively interview. We look forward to sharing more about the impact of the Job Search Workshop in our next update.
We are also proud to share the accomplishments of Vanessa, a top Level 1 welding graduate who has become Extollo’s first female lead welding trainer. Vanessa’s dedication, excellence in welding, and desire to learn have also earned her a coveted position on Extollo’s welding fabrication team. Thanks for the part you’re playing to give this alumni a better future!
We continue to connect with our alumni through alumni events on our campus, and through social media. Since many of our alumni aren’t able to keep the same phone number, we’ve created a Facebook group where all alumni information can be shared out to all interested alumni.
One of the important elements of our gatherings is to hear from our alumni about their current work, how often they’re able to find work, and what skills are they needing to become more competitive in the job market. So it is that at every alumni meeting each person fills out a survey letting us know what and how they are doing - and how Extollo can add more value to them as growing professionals in the construction industry. And it is always fun to give our alumni a tour of the campus, showing them all the new developments in process.
Thank you again for helping our alumni in their careers!
A big thanks to our donors to the "Employment Support for Extollo Alumni in Haiti" project!
This summer we held an Alumni Association meeting at our campus with almost 100 alumni, and the event included networking opportunities, job search coaching, and guest speakers from the construction industry. We also gave the alumni a survey that gave us really good data on how our alumni are faring in the local job market, and what skills they feel they need to be successful in the workforce.
We also had graduation for our Port-au-Prince campus at our Bercy campus, to show the new alumni the many construction businesses we are launching, show them how their training can produce structures of high quality, and inspire them to get involved in our tilt-up and metal fabrication operations.
In this class - the first class to be taught by Extollo at the new Port-au-Prince campus - one of the female students really shined in the Masonry Level 1 class, and won an award for her tenacity in learning a new skill in the construction trades. We are inspired and hopeful that more and more women will take our classes and thus join our Alumni Association!
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