On June 15, 2011, more than 500 guests filled the auditorium at the Menlo-Atherton Performing Arts Center to show their support for the 102 graduates comprising JobTrain’s class of 2011.
Wendell Carpenter CST graduate, delivered the student keynote address. Carpenter was recognized for his stellar academic performance and for utilizing available resources to overcome extreme and extenuating hardship. Silence was palpable when Carpenter credited JobTrain and its partnership with Single Stop USA, for transforming his life from hopeless to hopeful. Carpenter wholeheartedly thanked the non-profits for compassionately guiding him through the most difficult time of his life. According to Carpenter: “Before discovering JobTrain, my morning started with a call from a creditor. Sadly enough, it ended the same way. After being laid-off in July 2010, I lost my insurance benefits and couldn’t afford my wife’s medical bills or her required Cancer treatment. We were overwhelmed and for the first time in my life – I was scared. When my back was against the wall – thankfully, I found JobTrain and everything changed.” Single Stop USA renegotiated the terms of Carpenter’s debt and played an instrumental role in his new lease on life. After learning new marketable skills, benefitting from financial management services and graduating from JobTrain, Wendell Carpenter concluded his speech with: “I am better equipped and ready to handle the world again. I have gained confidence and feel like a breath of fresh air. I am ready to go to work now. I know I can do it!”