SNAP referral Deja Trotter came to Goodwill in September 2019 because she was determined to become a welder. During her initial days in training, while she was assisting with administrative tasks, she told Case Manager Candace Davis that she hoped to be chosen for the Welding program, as she knew it would change her life. 

She remained persistent in overcoming her barriers, which included challenges with childcare and moving. From her first day, Deja was an exceptional participant within her training cohort. She became a top welder in her class and an excellent resource for her peers. Deja was always willing to go above and beyond and distinguished herself by exceeding expectations. 

To no one’s surprise, Deja was the first to receive a job offer from Yamaha at $14 per hour – and this was before she completed the program! In November, she began working at Yamaha, where she gained enough experience to find an even better role at Republic Services. Deja joined the team at Republic in January 2020. As a compactor shop technician/welder, she started at $19 per hour and by October 2021 had received an increase to $19.50 per hour. She is loving her job. 

Deja is an enthusiastic advocate for Goodwill’s welding program and urges others to consider enrolling. She is an outstanding example for how life-changing participation in Goodwill’s various vocational training programs can be.