Central Station

The Bay Area's Newest Destination

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Apprentices from the Neighborhood

While working on this project, I’ve come across a lot of interesting people, literally hundreds of whom are involved in the construction process alone. While finishing the final touches in the Grove model, I met Reggie Collier the Second (not to be confused with his father), a 24 year old apprentice with Cannon Construction through the Alliance for West Oakland. The Alliance for West Oakland was created by Bruce Cox, an Oakland resident who connects local individuals ranging in age from 18 to 30 years with various trades and sets up internships and apprenticeships. With a project like the Pacific Cannery Lofts and the rest of the Central Station developments, there have been some great opportunities for local residents to get involved through his program.

Stephon Taylor, a 20 year old local is also a member of Mr. Cox’s program and is presently working and studying under Rex Moore Electricians. He is very excited and appreciative of the opportunity to advance in the electrical field.

Both young men grew up and currently live in Oakland, discovering the Alliance for West Oakland program through different avenues. Reggie was encouraged by Mr. Cox, a family friend, to pursue his interest in construction. He found his way onto the adjacent Pulte site, which then led to the opportunity with Cannon Constructors at Pacific Cannery Lofts. Stephon on the other hand, found Cox’s program through his personal job search and has been balancing on-the-job electrical training with his night classes through Rex Moore. Both Reggie and Stephon see these hands on experiences as a crucial career step. When asked about their goals, Stephon sees himself staying in the electrical field with more job responsibility and project management, and eventually owning his own business, while Reggie sees himself moving into the elevator technician trade. Good luck to you both!

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