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Palmer Pathways Scholars Progress

Shiquan posing in his WA. Conservation Corps uniform.

The Palmer Pathways program began in March 2020, at the start of the pandemic. Despite the challenges that COVID-19 brought, our five fully enrolled (we also had 6 amazing young adults who went directly into employment or education) Pathways Scholars persevered through 100 hours of Postsecondary Readiness Training, completing the first step of their Palmer Scholars journey in June. We wanted to give you a look into all our Scholars have accomplished in the past four months.

Malcolm completed his first quarter at Clover Park Technical College and is currently in his second quarter. Malcolm is pursuing a degree in IT Admin Security. “With this new quarter, where my courses are focused on my degree path,” Malcolm says, “I finally feel like I’m moving closer to my goals – I’m focused.”

Azamaia has been employed since August 6th full-time at Concrete Technology Corporation as a General Laborer. Concrete Tech is committed to providing high-quality precast/prestressed concrete products that meet the needs of the construction industry today and into the future. According to their website, Concrete Tech continuously invests in their employees and plant facilities to meet this commitment. When asked about his new work, Azamaia said that he’s “doing good, learning, and growing. It’s challenging for sure, but the work is good work.”

Chandler is currently in his first quarter at Bates Technical College in the Sheet Metal Technology program. Upon completion in 6 quarters, Chandler will pursue his apprenticeship with the Western Washington Sheet Metal Local 66 JATC (Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee). Chandler says his program has “been crazy. Being in college feels wild and great all at the same time.”

Nate is currently on a short-term contract with ANEW building tiny houses for King County Homeless Services. Nate has been working with ANEW since September 14th. According to Nate, his work has “been a blast. Though the commute (to/from Kent) is tough, the work has been fun and I’ve picked up some additional skills.”

Shiquan began a Washington Conservation Corps 11-month service contract on October 5th. Shiquan’s ultimate dream is to own his own urban farm and teach the BIPoC community how to make the most of the land they have, whether urban or rural. Shiquan is working in Tacoma restoring wetlands, salmon and wildlife habitats, trails, and forestry/arborist projects. Shiquan says, “We have been doing some crazy stuff out in the swampy areas of Tacoma--everything from cutting trees stripping them down and replanting them. In other places, we’re wading in water that's literally waist to chest high sometimes. I know how to plant trees and grow them - so many new skills I’ve learned - how to tie certain knots, how to paracord…I love it! This is where I was always meant to be.”

We are so proud of our Pathways Scholars and their commitment to creating a better life for themselves, their families, and our greater community!

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