Success Story:
College student to graduate with a degree in Biomedical Sciences, thanks to support from Telamon’s NFJP program

Obed, Maryland

Obed’s journey with Telamon-TRC began after he moved from Texas to Michigan to build a better future for him and his family. As migrant farmworkers, they sought work in Michigan during the summer months. Obed spent many of his summers harvesting tart cherries, working 12-hour shifts six days a week. A junior in college, he worked hard to help provide for his family as well as continue his education.

During his relocation, Obed transferred to Western Michigan University (WMU) from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. He could not afford the out-of-state tuition at WMU, but he did not want to put his mother under more financial stress. First, Obed sought help from WMU’s College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP), a program that supports freshmen students. Since he wasn’t eligible for the program, the CAMP staff referred him to the National Farmworker Jobs Program (NFJP) through Telamon-TRC’s Workforce and Career Services.

As a long-time agricultural worker at the cherry orchard, Obed was thrilled to learn that he qualified for NFJP services. He received tuition and book assistance from Telamon-TRC, helping him to focus more on his studies and worry less about his finances. His case managers, Aida and Rodrigo, were also devoted to Obed’s success throughout the program. They checked in with him regularly to ensure that he was doing okay in school as well as in his personal life.

“The support Telamon provided during my time at college was more than I ever imagined. It was tough, but my case managers helped motivate me to push myself to keep moving forward. Graduation wouldn’t have been possible without their wonderful, dedicated staff. They go above and beyond to help students overcome barriers to their education.”

As a first-generation college student, Obed faced many financial obstacles to affording the high costs of college tuition. With the financial assistance and motivational support provided by Telamon — and Obed’s hard work — he was on track to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Sciences in the spring of 2020. Obed’s future is open to opportunities than he never thought possible, and we know that he will be successful in any path he chooses.

Telamon-TRC’s Workforce & Career Services encompasses a broad array of customized work readiness and job skill training programs, focusing on helping farmworkers, and youth who seek to build skills and career paths. Work readiness and job skill development are often supplemented by language services (ESL), educational support (GED) and includes one-on-one counseling, group workshops and supportive services. 

Since 1965 Telamon-TRC has helped individuals like you access services that lead to better jobs, better lives, and better communities. Find a Workforce & Career Services program near you today.

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