Path Home Shows 2014 Show Archive February 2014 Show 1407 Making It Work: Poverty to Prosperity

Making It Work: Poverty to Prosperity

CareerTech’s Making It Work recognizes four nontraditional students for improving their lives through education.
Making It Work: Poverty to Prosperity

Making It Work: Poverty to Prosperity

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Gordon Cooper Technology Center

Caddo Kiowa Technology Center

Metro Technology Centers

Show Details

Show 1407: Making It Work: Poverty to Prosperity
Air Date: February 23, 2014



Rob McClendon: This year we began a new segment here on “Horizon” called the “Oklahoma Standard,” recognizing individuals who are setting a standard for their community or industry. But today, we take a slightly different twist by recognizing an entire program that helps individuals succeed in their industry, helping their entire community. Here’s our Alisa Hines.

Alisa Hines: It’s a day to celebrate.

Marisa Halbrooks: This will provide me with the education and skills to provide for my family with career opportunities.

Alisa: Rising above poverty and making it work.

Heaven King: It means that I have accomplished something.

Alisa: A single mother of two and one on the way, Heaven King is making it work by training for a better job in IT, better enabling her to provide for her family.

King: It’s been a great experience. My instructor is an awesome, awesome instructor. He keeps you wanting to learn more and keeps you laughing. So it’s been a great experience at Gordon Cooper.

Lawauna Brown: What I like the most is I’m able to provide for my family.

Alisa: Lawauna Brown is raising her nieces and son by herself and is now in the aircraft maintenance field at Tinker Air Force Base thanks to her training at Metro Tech’s Aviation Career Center.

Brown: Tinker Air Force Base hired me; actually while I was in school we did student interns. And then after I completed school and completed my FAA certifications, I received full-time employment. Within five months I was promoted another step.

Marisa Halbrooks: Today, it’s unreal to me. It’s a big deal. It shows me that I’m where I need to be.

Alisa: Marisa Halbrooks now works as a full-time executive secretary earning a high wage, but it’s not always been that way. Halbrooks says she entered the program after waking up one morning in her camper trailer with her daughter’s sippy cup frozen solid.

Halbrooks: Went to DHS that morning, and they gave me assistance, food assistance. And they also gave me a plan for the rest of my life. They told me about school, that I could go to vo-tech and that they would assist me while I was going through the program. As long as I followed their program, they’d do everything they could to help me. And they lived up to that promise. They did everything. It wasn’t easy. Nothing was handed to me. People talk about welfare and stuff being handed to you. And they’re so wrong because I’m living proof right now that it can be done. In two years, I’m off assistance. I have been gainfully employed for the last nine months with my dream job. I have been successful and I attribute that to DHS, Caddo County DHS. I attribute it to Caddo Kiowa Technology Center and to all the different organizations that helped me along the way.

Danelle Hagan: I’m glad I made the decision to do it because I thought about doing other things. I’m just glad to be where I’m at today.

Alisa: A single mother of a special needs child, Danelle Hagan is pursuing a career in aviation at Gordon Cooper Technology Center.

Hagan: I grew up, you know, working on race cars and you know, hanging out with my dad, doing things like that. I started working at the airport, and I’ve always been interested in getting my pilot’s license. So I was like, well, if I’m going to do that, I might as well know how to work on them too, and I enjoy working on things, so I came here.

Alisa: Giving her life new direction on a path that Danelle and others say anyone can take.

Hagan: I know it’s a really common saying, but if I can do it, you can too.

King: Whatever you put your mind to, you can do. Don’t ever be scared to do it.

Alisa: All four ladies are making it work with a future to look forward to.

Rob McClendon: Which makes the Making It Work program this week’s “Oklahoma Standard.”