Eckerd Connects and Potomac Job Corps teens visit the White House, President Biden

Six students representing the Job Corps program at the White House’s Pipeline Challenge launch.
(Pictured left to right: Trent Dixon, Carl Hilliard [Center Director], DayJai Glover, Jamari Carter, Julie Su [Deputy Secretary of Labor], Zhariah Jones, Ramond Johnson, Luis Montilla Vargas)

Washington, DC – As Eckerd Connects continues to connect youth and adults to their career futures and potential, the Potomac Job Corps campus in Washington, D.C., made dreams come true!

On Wednesday, November 2, 2022, six Potomac students represented the entire Job Corps program at the White House’s Talent Pipeline Challenge launch. The Talent Pipeline Challenge aims to fill high-quality jobs to help rebuild America’s infrastructure and supply chains. The challenge is a nationwide call to action for employers, education and training providers, states, local, Tribal, and territorial governments, and philanthropic organizations to make tangible commitments that support equitable workforce development in three critical infrastructure sectors: broadband, construction, and ‘electrification’ (EV Charging Infrastructure and Battery Manufacturing).

The six Potomac Job Corps construction, electrical, and plumbing students had a unique opportunity to walk around the White House and meet U.S. Department of Labor officials such as Deputy Assistant Secretary Julie Su; Acting Assistant Secretary for the Employment and Training Administration, Brent Parton and National Director of Job Corps, Rachel Torres.

“The students had a front-row seat to hear directly from President Joe Biden on the importance of closing the workforce gap and how each of our students could help,” says Carl Hilliard, Potomac Center Director. “Students also had the opportunity to network with industry leaders with national labor unions while testing their skills on the latest and emerging industry technology.”

As students were leaving the Potomac Job Corps campus – in VIP style – teachers, instructors, peers, parents, and friends were cheering! The students and staff representing Potomac Job Corps were overwhelmed by this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. But, more importantly, it was yet another display of Eckerd’s focus on preparing the next workforce generation.