4/1/2018  The WTA began a new program in February to train at-risk youth ages 17 to 21 at Our-House in Maryland (www.our-house.org).   The Our House provides a huge rural living and learning campus for males.  It is more than just a job skills training program, it includes development of the entire individual, providing the trainees with a full set of skills for success. WTA Executive Director Lou August and Chief Refurbisher Zawayne Thompson led the training progarm for two months using the award-winning Cisco IT Essentials curriculum.  The training also included lab sessions where youth disassembled computers, reassembled computers, and loaded software.  As always, the labs were a big hit.  Even though the curriculum is very comprehensive and increasingly technical, most of the youth completed the training program and received their Cisco Academy IT Essentials Certification – very similar to an A+ certification from Comtia.

After the training, WTA leaders shared lessons learned with the leadership of Our House. Together we came to the conclusion that the youth were especially excited about the labs and hands-on work.   Thus, the WTA’s next program at Our-House will focus on multimedia skills and project-based learning developing digital videos, web sites, and desktop published materials for real customers.  In advance of this technology training, the WTA in now planning a summer wilderness leadership program with Our House youth led by members of the US Army Special Forces (see the next article)