Discover all the different careers Opportunity Village has to offer with this series of in-depth profession overviews. 

Meet Cameron M., Entry Program Training Instructor

In this series of "Day in the Life of ____", we will be highlighting the various professions Opportunity Village has to offer. This feature is focused on the role of Entry Program Training Instructor.

What led you to OV/your current position? 

When I moved back home after graduating college, I knew what field I wanted to work in, and being born and raised in Las Vegas, I knew where I wanted to start my career. I started working with OV in 2018 as an Activities Coordinator at the Engelstad campus and was very fortunate for the connections and opportunities that came from that beginning. My next position was the first introduction to the Career Training Programs we have at OV, working as an instructor in the Job Discovery Program. I had the amazing opportunity to work with an awesome group of students at the Culinary Academy, where they gained skills used in the kitchen and hospitality industry from professional chefs. From there, I made the jump in the same department to the Pathway to Work program where I worked with a wonderful team in the warehouse setting of Get Fresh Produce. Which brings me to my current position, where I am a Training Instructor at Allegiant Stadium in the Entry Program and still with the Career Training department. Here just like the two previous positions we work with people to gain job skills in a community setting, focusing on job-specific challenges that may be present. 

What does a typical day look like for you?

My day starts by walking into the Allegiant Stadium box office and walking alongside the beautiful Las Vegas strip into the new home of the Las Vegas Raiders. We are very fortunate to have the opportunity to collaborate with the Raiders in opening our newest job-training site within the Career Training Programs department. Here we work with participants in a community setting to gain the necessary skills required for competitive employment. We work on fostering the necessary soft skills and hard skills needed for employment, building resumes, developing interview etiquette, and identifying and supporting short-term and long-term career goals for each person. At Allegiant Stadium, we have a team of three hard working people training as Warehouse Associates and Retail Sales Associates during their day. The team works alongside employees of the Raiders, gaining skills and real world experience that they will take with them when they move into the next step of their career. A majority of my daily schedule is working with the participants to improve upon skills they already have or may need to gain, with our ultimate goal being competitive community employment for each person. I am responsible for providing feedback and insight as to how job tasks might be completed in a more effective and efficient manner, while still working through daily job-specific challenges that may be present.

What is the most exciting part of your job?

The most exciting part of my job by far is seeing the participants move on from our program and accomplish the goals that they set for themselves. Knowing the participants are taking steps to gain more independence in their lives and have the opportunity to get a paycheck for their hard work is why we do what we do. There is nothing more exciting than hearing that they nailed their job interview and were offered the position! Well, a close second is months later when you hear about how much they love their new job and that they are excelling in the community. 

Who inspires you? 

When asked this question before joining the Career Training department and having the opportunity to take part in the amazing programs we offer I would answer with my family, as they are the reason I am the person that I am today and who I will be in the future. Now when answering this question I still include my family, but I also have to add the students and participants who join our programs fighting for their basic rights and opportunities that so many of us take for granted. They show up for daily training trying to better their lives and put themselves in positions to accomplish their goals, while still working with daily challenges that so many do not take the time to understand. Because of that, I also have to include my coworkers and fellow instructors, as they show up daily to provide this training and truly take the time to understand each person and what they want for their own lives. Our main focus is employment-related, but we also focus on their basic life skills so each person has the knowledge and skills needed to gain whatever level of independence they feel is right for them and accomplish any life goal they set for themselves. So my family, the people we work alongside and my coworkers inspire me in my work and life.

What is your favorite thing to do when you're not working? 

When I am not working at OV or coaching youth baseball, I enjoy watching sports, doing anything outside and I love to spend time with friends and family.

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