Educational summit introduces career opportunities, advancement programs

By Rogelio Alvarez and Amber Paramo

The Community Economic Development (CED) Summit presented internships, apprenticeships and vocational skill training to students and community who are interested in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

The summit took place on March 13 at East Los Angeles College in the G3 Arts Foyer Room.​

It was a chance for students and the community to build connections with professionals working in related fields.

The goal of the summit was to bring awareness to those who are interested in career paths in architecture, construction, designing, nursing, plumbing, logistics and computer applications and information technology.

The East Los Angeles Community has access to the state of California’s $200 million worth in apprenticeships.

For young adults who are between the ages of 16-24 year old, Calò Academy located in Boyle Heights can help students earn their high school diploma, gain community leadership, vocational training and pre-apprentice training and certification.

Another youth program that offers assistance to young adults is Boyle Heights Youth Source Center. It offers services (to the ages 17-21 years old) of free GED, assist with interview attire, work experience and transportation assistance.

It also offers free video production classes. Students who participate may also earn up to $1,000. This program helps young adults  prepare for the real world.

As for high school students, Architecture Construction Engineering Students (ACES) is a program that engages students by participating in BuildLACCD.

Students also have an opportunity to earn college credit and scholarships through this program. By the time students are ready to graduate, ACES provides each student with the readiness and confidence they will need to succeed.

As for college students, BuildLACCD has a College Internship Program that creates pathways to STEM careers for college students.

This conference included a variety of resources for the East LA community, high school students and ELAC college students.

Tutor and logistics major Christina Hamelin was one of the participants at the summit involved with introducing students to ELAC’s logistics program. “The summit gets people more involved, and helps students develop social skills,” Hamelin said.

This conference engaged students and the community to equip, explore and expand their careers. These programs were aimed at college students, high school students and adults seeking employment while receiving an education from it.

Many of the booths, which were a part of CED, offered workforce education programs for free or at a low cost for residents of ELAC’s surrounding communities.

“I’m glad these things are being offered so people can get a grasp on it,” ​ELAC student Christian Allan Porfirio said. “They can take advantage of these tools and give back to the community. Never take internships for granted, you will never know where it will take you.”

BuildLACCD provides students with paid internship opportunities that collaborate with businesses contractors who perform work on the Build Program. Internships are available for a variety of occupations that allows students to gain work experience and transferable skills.

​​The Los Angeles Community College District has around 160 construction projects left to invest in ELAC and the other community colleges within the district.

BuildLACCD, working with the district’s bond program, has decided to involve aspiring STEM students in these upcoming projects through internships.

According to ELAC Vice President of Administrative Services, Dr. Ann Tomlinson, these community projects are contributions for student success.

BuildLACCD, along with other representatives from labor unions and community development programs, have invested money into providing the students and  communities with internships and apprenticeships.​

​Apart from the internship opportunities, one of the booths at the summit was focused on providing services for veterans. This organization is a part of Los Angeles Trade Technical College (LATTC) and offers free apprenticeship-prep training.

This five-week boot camp includes construction trade overview, first aid/CPR, blueprint reading, physical conditioning and more. After veterans complete the boot camp, they have the option to join an apprenticeship and/or to earn a degree.

Many of the fliers from the summit are available in the Career Center. Students who were not able to attend the summit can still take advantage of the internships and resources at

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