It was a big night in Moses Lake on December 13th as six youth assembled with family members and supporters to sign on with Genie Industries in their first Youth Apprenticeship cohort! Representative Jacquelin Maycumber joined the celebration to congratulate the apprentices on embarking on this groundbreaking program, and to be an honorary signer on their apprenticeship certificates.

In September 2023 in collaboration with NCESD and SkillSource, AJAC – Advanced Manufacturing Apprenticeships held an information night at Genie Industries in Moses Lake to an audience of 68 potential apprentice candidates for their new Production Technician apprenticeship program. The 2,000 hour program is designed for high school juniors and seniors to develop career-ready skills in the advanced manufacturing industries, combining paid on-the-job training, and college-level classroom instruction.

Of the six youth apprentices to sign on with Genie, all from the Moses Lake School District, one of them was a SkillSource participant. Eric Hernandez, now 18 years old, came to SkillSource in September of 2022.

Eric had dropped out of school during the pandemic, and was ready to complete his education. He comes from a family of Genie workers, including his father, his mother, and his grandfather (now retired), and had shared with his career counselor at SkillSource that he was interested in working for Genie once he completed his education. Eric’s career counselor let him know about the AJAC/Genie information night, and Eric showed up ready to learn, and eager to apply for the apprenticeship program. He then received resume support through SkillSource and attended an interview workshop and a mock interview to prepare for his apprenticeship interview with Genie.

Eric Hernandez at the Genie signing night with his family and two SkillSource counselors.

Youth Apprenticeship participants have the potential to earn over $30,000 during the program, while also accruing college credits. The blend of hands-on experience through on-the-job training offers participants a running start at a successful career in advanced manufacturing.

We are so excited for Eric and the rest of this initial apprenticeship cohort as they embark on a rewarding path as Production Technicians. Congratulations to all!