Gainesville’s Nathan Oliver joined the Marines right out of high school. He served for about six years, which included a combat tour in Iraq. When he returned to civilian life, he began working with his father, who taught him to weld.

Veterans often have challenges as they readjust, and Nathan’s issues unfortunately resulted in incarceration. Upon his release, he was referred to Goodwill by the Veterans Court. During his first visit to the Oakwood Career Center in late August 2020, he met with Goodwill’s Veterans Coordinator, Greg Bradley.

Greg immediately set to work and helped Nathan as he navigated benefits he might qualify for, which would assist him in getting a fresh start. During the conversation, Nathan shared with Greg that he knew how to weld, and Greg facilitated Nathan’s entry into Goodwill’s Welding program so that he could become certified.

Nathan impressed the instructors with his knowledge and skill, and he was able to assist by providing one-on-one attention to participants who needed additional guidance. He completed the program and earned his certification on September 5th. Prior to his graduation, he had already secured employment at Ceramic Tile Services where he presently serves as a maintenance technician.

Greg was impressed by Nathan’s motivation, particularly his desire to be a better father to his children. “It was fulfilling to help Nathan craft a plan to achieve his goals. I’m thrilled that he is now working full-time, earning a good living, and is able to spend time with his children.”