The District of Columbia Housing Authority’s Modified Apprenticeship Training Program has started for the 2020-2021 season.
The Modified Apprenticeship Training Program (ATP), started in March 2018, has nearly 40 apprentices this year who have the opportunity to learn job skills while also working to enhance the appearance and curb appeal of DCHA properties.
The apprentices are at ATP training center or working to improve DCHA properties Monday through Thursday. Fridays are reserved for professional development sessions.
On Friday, August 21 the apprentices began their virtual professional development sessions. Every other week, they will attend a Webex meeting that will cover a wide variety of subject matter that will help them navigate the professional world.
The first session was an opportunity for the trainees to learn what is expected of them at the workplace and in professional development courses. It also provided insight into the structure and format of the remaining syllabus. The host, Justin Cartagena, a job development specialist for DCHA’s Workforce Development Initiative, also covered job data showing open positions in Washington, D.C. in various fields and the top most requested skills. He highlighted these data points to demonstrate that ATP and the professional development courses will better prepare the apprentices with numerous skills that they will be able to use in the future. The apprentices also were able to ask any questions of their instructors throughout the online session.
Other courses will include professionalism in the work environment, interviewing best practices, building resumes, conflict resolutions and more.
Some former ATP graduates helped to renovate the former home of the Office of Resident Services into a large room with 14 different cubicles separated by walls and Plexiglas. The Customer Solutions Center will leverage technology to allow DCHA customers to meet with DCHA staff, submit rent payments and recertification forms, participate in fair hearings, connect with housing specialists, and much more on a virtual basis.
Customers will schedule an appointment in advance and will be able to conduct a safe, socially distanced visit for their DCHA business needs at one of the center’s cubicles. Spaces will be cleaned and sanitized between each transaction.
Previous apprentice classes built an ATP training center at Greenleaf Family, worked on unit turnovers, and handled various groundskeeping and maintenance upkeep.
Many apprentices from the past two graduating classes found employment at DCHA, either as member of the vacant unit rehabilitation team or in other areas of maintenance staff, such as laborers. Other members of previous years’ graduating classes are now working at partner organizations and companies, such as D.C. Department of Public Works, and with a DCHA contractor, Galaxy Paint.
For more information on the Workforce Development Initiative call Justin Cartagena (202) 604-7522.