October 12, 2017 – Columbus, Ohio – Members of the IUPAT DC6 Finishing Trades Institute of the Ohio Region (FTIOR) took part in the 6th Annual Fostering Pathways to Success conference in Xenos, hosted by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS). The event was attended by over 400 foster youth ages 14 to 24, adult caregivers and professionals. The purpose of the conference is to connect former foster youth to financial aid, housing, mentoring, and apprenticeship opportunities as they embark on their life journey.
John Husted, Ohio Secretary of State was the morning Keynote speaker. Adopted as a child, he has been a longstanding advocate for adoption and helping to pair children with healthy and loving families.
The Lunch Keynote Speaker MelissaRoshan Potter (“MelRo”), an uncommon talent who has modeled internationally for more than 15 years. She has appeared on magazine covers, billboards, print ads, national commercials, and runways, but what this respected model is most proud of is being a survivor who aged out of foster care, became a teen parent, and lived with her son in a teen-parenting homeless shelter for two years.
Attendees had the opportunity to attend a workshop entitled “ApprenticeOhio: A Path to a Great Career with No College Debt hosted by Becky DeMatteis and Matthew Longfellow. They learned that Apprenticeships can provide a smooth pathway to a good-paying, in-demand career, with no student loan debt.
IUPAT DC6 FTIOR representatives were on hand to answer questions, hand out T-Shirts, and share their own career paths with IUPAT. The conference offered many valuable resources to both young people and adult supporters alike.