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Started ESL classes at Daley College

Started taking English as a Second Language classes after moving to the U.S. from Venezuela

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Enrolled in the advanced manufacturing bridge program

Gained an industry-recognized certificate at no cost while improving her English

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Hired for a manufacturing role

Earned an in-demand position as a manager of production at a factory

When Veronica Rodriguez arrived in the U.S. from Venezuela two years ago, she had to figure out how to start her life over again—and where to begin. She decided to work on improving her English first, which led her to Daley College.

Veronica decided to pursue Daley’s Career Bridge program, which helps students improve their reading, writing, math, and English skills as they earn an industry certificate. She looked over the options at all the colleges and wasn’t sure exactly what she would study. She was a psychologist in Venezuela but didn’t want to go through the process or deal with the expense of transferring her license to the U.S.

Finally, Veronica decided to give advanced manufacturing a try. Daley offered classes that aligned with her schedule, and she could get a basic certificate in just one semester as a full-time student, then get straight to work. The advanced manufacturing courses immediately excited Veronica and captured her attention.

“They start from the basics,” she said. “I didn’t know how to use the tools for this kind of work. They taught me everything.”

Veronica’s work ethic helped her succeed in the program. Sometimes, she would stay after class with her classmates to practice on the equipment. And overall, she looked forward to going to class and learning from her professors whom she calls “amazing and engaging,” saying they made learning interesting.

Veronica would also talk to high school seniors who visited Daley on campus tours. They’d ask her why she was interested in advanced manufacturing. She’d share how many companies are looking for women to work in advanced manufacturing roles, and they’re paying those women well.

“But it’s not just about the pay,” Veronica said. “It’s about the gratification of completing the program and getting to work.”

The program did prepare Veronica for work.

“I’m actually working right now, thanks to the Daley certificate. I use what I learned every day,” she said.

Veronica is now a manager of production at a factory and works with machines nonstop. She’s grateful for the doors Daley opened and the opportunities the college provided. Her education has given her the brand-new life she was searching for in America.

“I didn’t know there was a second chance for me here in the United States until Daley and the manufacturing program gave me the opportunity,” Veronica said.