My Nonprofit Reviews
Review for The Stride Center, Oakland, CA, USA
I came to the Stride Center after dropping out of college, moving back in with my Mom, and working retail and customer service.
I would not say I was desperate but was driven to succeed where I had failed so many times before.
After taking the CompTIA A+ course and passing the certification exams, the employment office helped me get an interview with Contra Costa County Health Services. I then got myself the job as a student worker, working on the phone and field teams. I was able to practice and hone all the skills I had learned in class on real hardware at an enterprise-level of scale.
During my tenure at County, I was instructed to take another course to keep my job. I took Network+, through the Stride Center. It was at my CompTIA Network+ course that I fell in love with the idea of networking and became passionate enough to go for the six-month Saturday-only CCNA Routing and Switching course.
My scholarship did not cover the CCNA course. So I went to Eastbay Works to figure out how to go through the Workforce Investment and Opportunity Act to get the government to pay for this advanced course. They did, and not only that. I also received Unemployment while in the class.
Now you might think that one class a week while getting paid for it is almost like charity. Don't get me wrong, I am so, so grateful for the opportunity. But the class was very intense, and I felt I needed all week to study two college sized chapters a week.
So having taken the course and passed the certification exams, I am now a CCNA. This kind of cert leads to jobs such as Network Administration or Network Engineer. And these positions can be paid as much as $85k/year.
This is why I joined the Stride Center; this is what they do. They help us pull ourselves out of poverty, out of our Moms' houses and into the world where, through our hard work, we become citizens, real people, a force for good in our lives.
There are not enough words to describe all that the Stride Center does and has done for me. There is not a way I could ever pay back entirely what they have put into me. They tell me, one of the best ways to give back is to be an example. So that's what I'm trying to do.