CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Kids from the Nueces County Juvenile Dentition Center received a hands-on lesson in the trade of welding.
“We have young people in town who think that they have to leave Corpus to find an opportunity they can’t wait to graduate so they can go to the real world, the real world is here,” said Director of HELP Dr. Ridge Hammons.
Dr. Hammons with the Hammons Education Leadership Program (HELP) says for kids who may have made a few mistakes; hope, a bright future, and opportunities are still worth fighting for. This is something the Owner of Blue Diamond Welding School Horacio Balli says he has experienced firsthand.
“It’s surreal, it really is I’ve been in their same situation and I just needed somebody to kinda lead you in the right direction,” said Balli.
With the hands-on welding demonstration, Balli says the goal was to have these young minds at the dentition center, to think about their futures, and to learn a trade as a career.
“There is such a high demand for a trade, welding, electrocution, pluming and we have a whole generation that’s about to retire and someone needs to step up and help fill in that gap,” said Balli.
Kids from the Nueces County Juvenile Dentition Center learned about welding equipment, travel speed, and the importance of having a steady hand.
“So this is not just serving the kids it’s also serving the community we’re trying to help produce the workers that are so desperately needed today and tomorrow,” said Dr. Hammons.
“You teach someone a trade, and you don’t know who that person is going to touch, because that kid might end up being a welder you know doing good for himself and he’s going to be a role model for other kids his cousins, his friends, you name it,” said Balli.