When Jonathan Julion graduated from the University of Chicago Woodlawn Charter School, he already knew he wanted to study information technology.

“I was always interested in computers and how they work. Technology is always going to be part of our lives, and if you don’t keep up with it, you’re going to be left behind,” he explained.

He started taking classes at Harold Washington College, and on his way to completing an Associate Degree in Management and Marketing, he also earned a basic certificates in Computer Information Systems and Accounting, as well as an Advanced Certificate in Management and Marketing.

These credentials no doubt served him well as an apprentice at Aon – a highly selective opportunity that allows Harold Washington students to work at Aon, earning a salary and benefits, while taking classes at the college. In the year-long apprenticeship, Jonathan worked in the IT Department, serving different clients around the world by troubleshooting, and assisting with network and authentication issues. He also had the opportunity to learn more about cyber security – which he is now studying full-time at Roosevelt University.

Jonathan is especially grateful for the support he received from his parents, as well as the team at HWC, advisors Tanye Harrison and Rosa Garcia, who told him about the Aon apprenticeship, encouraged him to apply, and supported him as he worked to accomplish his goals.

His advice to other students is to try new things, saying “maybe you meet someone knew, learn new skills, or become more marketable. You never know where an opportunity can take you.