Chickasaw student dovetails love of art, design into inviting careerCONTRIBUTED BY Jennifer Jones, Media Relations.
ADA, Okla. – The success Chickasaw citizen Will Bailey has achieved has been recently featured in the Pontotoc Technology Center (PTC) CareerTech Champions newsletter. Mr. Bailey leveraged his lifelong love of art into a full-time career with the Chickasaw Nation through the support of career training and higher education programs.
A childhood of painting and drawing led him to media arts class in high school, which lead to custom air brushing and paint work after hours. His talent for artistic design took him to PTC, where he earned certifications in Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator and a National Career Readiness Certificate.
He also received on-the-job training as junior graphic designer/interactive developer in the Chickasaw Nation Training Department as part of the School-to-Work program.
“The School-to-Work program provided full-time pay for the hours that I was in class, and also the hours at the on-the-job site, adding up to a full 40 hours a week,” Mr. Bailey said. “Because of this I did not have to work at an evening job, and was able to focus on school and my family.”
He completed the Multimedia Specialist/Graphic Design program at PTC in nine months, and graduated with a 4.0 grade point average in May 2016. He is now using his skills full time with the Chickasaw Nation as an interactive developer in the training department.
“The programs I learned at PTC and skills I developed while in the School-to-Work program are used in my job now,” Mr. Bailey said. “As interactive developer, I develop, design and create visual concepts with computer software, like Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, to communicate ideas that inform or assist employees in online or in-class trainings.”
In addition to the School-to-Work program, he received educational support from the Chickasaw Nation Career Technology Program. The program offers funding to Chickasaw students pursuing occupational education at accredited career technology centers, trade schools or privately-licensed training facilities. Funding is available for full- and part-time students, is not income-based and is open to Chickasaw citizens who live anywhere.
The program also provides assistance with fees for occupational licensing and certification exams, certification completion incentives, and textbook and supply assistance grants.
For more information on the career technology program, visit www.Chickasaw.Net/CareerTech or call (580) 421-7711.
To learn more about the school-to-work program, visit www.Chickasaw.Net and search “school to work.” Information and applications are available online or by calling (580) 222-2839. Citizens can also visit www.chickasaw.net/careers to find school to work program openings, or contact a Chickasaw Nation citizen recruiter at ChickasawRecruiters@Chickasaw.net.