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Ninety-two Surry-Yadkin Works Interns Sign with Local Companies for Employment

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Forty-nine students signed on for full or part-time employment with 30 area companies after completing pre-apprenticeships through the Surry-Yadkin Works program in a special signing ceremony that took place at Surry Community College on June 21, while 43 others signed with Hugh Chatham Health and Northern Regional Hospital in earlier ceremonies.

The Surry-Yadkin Works program is the collaborative effort of four public school systems in Surry and Yadkin counties including Elkin City Schools, Mount Airy City Schools, Surry County Schools, and Yadkin County Schools, as well as Surry Community College, to create a unique approach to a regional internship program.

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Forty-nine students signed on for full or part-time employment with 30 area companies after completing internships through the Surry-Yadkin Works program in a special signing ceremony that took place at Surry Community College in June. The students are pictured with Surry-Yadkin Works staff members Crystal Folger-Hawks, Program Director, (front row, second from right), Whittney Harris, Workforce Development Specialist, (front row, far right), and Sable White, Workforce Development Specialist, (second row, far right). For more information about Surry-Yadkin Works, visit surryyadkinworks.org.

“Today was an inspirational reminder that intentional planning with educational partners, businesses, and students can produce unbelievable results that change lives,” said Surry-Yadkin Works Director Crystal Folger-Hawks. “These students have learned how to be productive members and contribute to our community. The Surry-Yadkin Works collaborative program is proving that by working together we can create a well-prepared and highly engaged workforce.”

According to Dr. David Shockley, President of Surry Community College, Surry-Yadkin Works has placed 150 unduplicated interns or pre-apprentices in 65 different businesses. Shockley noted, “Seventy-one percent of these students are continuing employment either part-time, full-time, or are returning pre-apprentices for the next school year. Moving from an internship to a pre-apprenticeship helps prepare students to enter and succeed in registered apprenticeship programs, and it is a valuable recruiting and screening tool to ensure the right fit for employment for both the company and the student.”

The apprenticeship positions must be approved and registered by ApprenticeshipNC, which is North Carolina’s Apprenticeship program managed by the N.C. Community College System. This program allows students to earn income while they learn a highly-skilled trade. Through the program, students are able to continue their education at Surry Community College, or other community college, tuition free.

Casey Gammons, a recent graduate of Surry Central High School, was hired as a welding pre-apprentice by Allen Industries and will be continuing his education at SCC while employed.

Anthony Allen and JT Simmons, recent graduates of East Surry High School, Carson Hill, a recent graduate of Mount Airy High School, and Fabian Zapata, a rising senior at Surry Early College High School, were hired as welding apprentices at Altec. Tyler Smeltzer, a recent graduate of Surry Central High School, was hired at Altec as an assembly apprentice.

Levi Rorrer, a recent graduate of Virginia Tech University and a 2019 graduate of North Surry High School, accepted a permanent full-time position of Systems Analyst 1 at Altec. Rorrer was one of the first high school interns at Altec in Mount Airy and completed his internship there in 2019 through the predecessor program of Surry-Yadkin Works. During his time at Virginia Tech, he continued his internship with Altec in Mount Airy and Roanoke.

Avery Martin, a recent graduate of Surry Early College High School and a recipient of an Associates in Arts degree from SCC, accepted a veterinary technician position at Animal Medical Services.

Luke Maske, a rising senior at Yadkin Early College High School, accepted a welding apprentice position with Austin Electrical Enclosures.

Trinity Combs, a recent graduate of Forbush High School, completed an internship at Unifi in Maintenance and accepted a part-time position in the Maintenance and HVAC department for B&G Foods, Inc. He will also continue his education at SCC to earn a diploma in HVAC.

Erika Burcham, a recent graduate of Surry Online Magnet School, accepted a part-time position in the medical office of Buttonwood Chiropractic while she continues her education at SCC. She will also work PRN for Novant Health in the fall. PRN is an acronym for the Latin term “pro re nata,” which means “as the situation demands,” or simply, “as needed.” PRN nurses are fully licensed professionals who want to work on-call instead of as a full-time employee.

Marshall Wells, a recent graduate of Elkin High School, accepted a marketing position with Carolina Ink. He will be attending Catawba College in the fall to study Marketing.

Avery Castle, a recent graduate of Yadkin Early College High School and a recipient of an Associate in Arts Degree and a Certificate in Business Administration from SCC, accepted a marketing position with Children’s Center of Northwest North Carolina and will attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill this fall.

Autumn Dockery and Megan Mabe, recent graduates of Yadkin Early College High School and recipients of Associate in Arts Degrees from SCC, accepted part-time employment in teen court at Children’s Center. Both graduates plan to attend Lees-McRae College in the fall. Mabe is also enrolled in SCC’s Emergency Medical Technician Program.

Madison Tilley, a recent graduate of Elkin High School, signed with Elkin City Schools as a Teacher Assistant Apprentice working with Elkin City Schools, and will continue her education at Surry Community College for an Associate’s Degree with a Teacher Preparation Pathway.

Gabriela Rodriguez-Pena, a recent graduate of Forbush High School, accepted a position with Hands of Hope as a Pharmacy Interpreter. She will work part-time this summer and attend Appalachian State University in the fall.

Grace Phillips, a recent graduate of East Surry High School, accepted a position as a Culinary Pre-Apprentice at the Harvest Grill at Shelton Vineyards in Dobson.

Bryan Gio Morrison, a recent graduate of Surry Early College High School, was hired by Johnson Granite as a Manufacturing Intern and will be going to work full-time once he completes his study in Computer-Integrated Machining.

Ray Pell, a recent North Surry High School graduate, accepted a Funeral Director position with Moody’s Funeral Service in Mount Airy and will continue his education at SCC and Fayetteville Technical Community College for Funeral Directing.

Devin Davis, a recent graduate of Mount Airy High School, accepted part-time employment with Mount Airy City Schools as a Teacher Assistant Apprentice. She will continue her education at SCC for an Associate’s Degree with a Teacher Preparation Pathway.

Karla Pedraza, a recent graduate of Surry Central High School, signed with Mountain Valley Hospice & Palliative Care as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) Apprentice. She will continue her education at Surry Community College in Nursing.

Janet Cano-Cabrera, a recent graduate of Surry Central High School, was hired as a full-time Accounting Pre-Apprentice at N.C. Steel Buildings. She entered the Surry-Yadkin Works program her junior year and began work at Leonard Buildings on the manufacturing floor in quality control.

Whitley Hege, a recent graduate of North Surry High School, accepted a part-time position as an Office/HR Pre-Apprentice at Pike Electric while she continues her education at SCC for a Business degree.

Sarah Jane Lawson, a recent graduate of North Surry High School, accepted a part-time position in Patient Care and Food Service with RidgeCrest. She will be attending Wingate University for Exercise Science and has also been accepted into Wingate’s Physical Therapy program.

Zamaya Strickland, a recent graduate of North Surry High School, accepted a part-time position with S&N Salon. She plans to continue her education at SCC in the Cosmetology program.

Accepting full time positions at Shenandoah Furniture are recent North Surry High School graduates Zack Church, who will be working as a Cutting Pre-Apprentice, Keaton Holder, who will be working as a Shipping and Packing Pre-Apprentice, and Keaton Leonard, who will be working as a Fabric Department Pre-Apprentice.

Enoc Lopez, a recent graduate of Surry Central High School, accepted full-time employment in Construction at Smith-Rowe. He plans to continue his education at SCC in the fall. Cristian Urquiza, a recent graduate of Surry Early College High School and recipient of Associate in Arts and Associate in Science Degrees from SCC, accepted a position with Smith-Rowe in Construction & Engineering. He will attend the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in the fall where he plans to major in Mechanical Engineering.

Dylan Myers, a recent graduate of East Surry High School, accepted a part-time position with Surry Communications in Information Technology. He will study Computer Information Systems with a concentration in Cyber Security at Appalachian State University in the fall.

Austin Terry, a recent graduate of Elkin High School, accepted a part-time position with Surry Community College in Information Technology. He will continue his education at SCC studying computer science.

Emma Ford, a recent graduate of Surry Central High School, also accepted a part-time position with Surry-Yadkin Works/Surry Community College in Social Media Marketing. She will attend N.C. State University to major in Marketing in the fall.

Samantha McCarty, Mae Minor, Elli Oakley, and Ella Reece, all recent graduates of North Surry High School, accepted part-time EMT Assistant Apprenticeship positions with Surry County Emergency Medical Services. They plan to continue their education at SCC in the Paramedic program.

Hunter Norman, a recent graduate of Surry Central High School, accepted full-time employment in General Maintenance with Surry County Parks & Recreation.

Laken Coe and Bailey Price, both recent graduates of Surry Central High School, accepted part-time positions as Teacher Assistant Apprentices with Surry County Schools. Both graduates plan to continue their education at SCC for an Associate’s Degree with a Teacher Preparation Pathway. Jackson Lindsay, a recent graduate of Surry Early College High School and a recipient of an Associates in Applied Science in Information Technology Degree from SCC, with a Diploma in Information Technology, a Network Management Certificate, and a Programming Certificate, accepted a full-time position with Surry County Schools in the IT Department.

Logan Sweeny, a recent graduate of Surry Early College High School and a recipient of an Associates in Applied Science in Information Technology Degree from SCC, with a Diploma in Information Technology, a Network Management Certificate, and a Programming Certificate, accepted a full-time position with Surry-Yadkin Electric Membership Corporation in the IT Department.

Omar Serrano, a recent graduate of Starmount High School, accepted a part-time position with Unifi in Maintenance. He will continue his education at SCC to earn an Associate in Applied Science in Electrical Systems.

RJ Carrasco, a recent graduate of Yadkin Early College High School and a recipient of an Associates in Arts Degree from SCC, was hired part-time by Yadkin County Government in Office Administration at Veteran’s Affairs. He will continue his education at Catawba College in the fall to major in Business and Computer Science.

Skylar Armstrong, a recent graduate of Forbush High School, accepted a part-time position with Yadkin County Schools as a Teacher Assistant Apprentice. Rayna Cruz, Willow Presnell and Maddy Triplett, recent graduates of Starmount High School, also accepted part-time positions with Yadkin County Schools as Teacher Assistant Apprentices. Armstrong, Cruz, and Presnell will continue their education at SCC in the Associate’s Degree Teacher Preparation Pathway. Triplett will also continue her education at SCC working toward an Associate’s Degree with a focus on Early Childhood Education.

At previous job signing events, 14 area students recently signed for full or part-time employment with Hugh Chatham Health, and 29 students signed for summer employment with Northern Regional Hospital.

For more information about Surry-Yadkin Works, contact Crystal Folger-Hawks, at (336) 401-7820 or folger-hawksc@surry.edu or visit www.surryyadkinworks.org. You can also follow Surry-Yadkin Works on Facebook and Instagram @surryyadkinworks and on Twitter @SurYadWorks.

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