Green Workforce Spotlight: Bry’Ana Wallace

Green Workforce Spotlight: Bry’Ana Wallace

MCE is proud to offer green workforce development opportunities in partnership with Rising Sun Center for Opportunity. Rising Sun offers training programs for youth, women, and individuals interested in reentering the workforce. The programs equip them with the skills necessary to start successful green careers.

In the summer of 2021, Bry’Ana Wallace graduated from Rising Sun. She then worked a two-week solar job with GRID Alternatives before moving into a full-time job in terrazzo flooring installation. Now interested in starting a career in elevator construction, Bry’Ana took some time with us to share her experience with Rising Sun and the valuable connections she made through the program.

What led you to the Rising Sun training program?

After losing my grandmother years ago, I became homeless. For a long time, I didn’t know where to turn or how to change my situation. Last year, my cousin told me about Rising Sun and how the programs had changed people’s lives. I had a baby on the way and was so excited about the opportunity to join a program that could improve my living situation and my son’s future.

How has your life changed since joining Rising Sun?

Rising Sun connected me with Moms4Housing, an organization that helps reclaim housing for homeless mothers. Because of that connection, I am now in a house of my own and my son and I are no longer homeless. After graduating from Rising Sun, I started a job laying terrazzo flooring. Unfortunately, I had to put my career on pause because childcare became unavailable due to the recent spike in COVID cases. Now that my son is back in daycare, I am working on launching a new career in elevator construction.

What would you say to someone considering this program?

They should absolutely go for it! I learned so many skills through the program, from construction, to math, to professionalism. Many instructors have been in the trades themselves and have connections in the industry and insights to share. In addition to skills and experience, Rising Sun also offers mental health coaching, help with substance abuse, and general mentorship. The resources at Rising Sun helped me when I felt like I was losing my way. I made great connections through the training. Everyone was truly supportive and continues to support me even now as an alumni.

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