News Archives: Trinity Thompson: Following Her Father's Footsteps
Thursday, May 17th, 2018
GPRC Dual Credit student Trinity Thompson has had the opportunity to complete her first year of college before she even finished high school. Through the GPRC Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP) and the Dual Credit Program, students like Trinity have the opportunity to get earn credits in high school and College at the same time.
Ever since she was a child, Trinity has been interested in welding. Her interest in welding started with watching her father, Doug Thompson, a Red Seal Journeyman welder and Canadian Welding Bureau (CWB) welding supervisor, run his shop, Hell ‘N’ Back Welding LTD.
One day, Scott Randall—the teacher who oversees the Work Experience and RAP at Glenmary School which Thompson attends—approached Trinity about RAP. Randall was aware that Trinity was involved in welding and he wanted to make sure she knew what opportunities were available to her.
“These programs encourage students to complete their high school education while being able to study an area of interest, sometimes even earning a wage at the same time,” said GPRC welding instructor Lindsay Rosser. “If these programs didn’t exist, some students would most likely not be inclined to finish high school.”
"They wanted to see me succeed,” said Trinity. “I’m really thankful, because without their help I wouldn’t have been able to do it—along with my parents’ help of course. It’s really important that the school is backing you.”
Without these programs, Trinity would not have been able to get the work hours and experience she needed before going to college. “Going to school full-time, you only have so many hours left in the day that you can possibly work before getting exhausted with homework and tests,” she said.
RAP helps students arrange their course load so they can take a semester off from school or attend only in the mornings and still gain high school credit for working.
“As a parent, it means the world to see your child succeed in a skill she has a passion and a true talent for, and to achieve the first steps toward her long-term goals. RAP made it possible for Trinity to get high school credits for working with her hands and starting her welding apprenticeship,” said her father, Doug.
Trinity worked all summer to get enough hours for her high school credit. Then in October, she went to GPRC Fairview where she stayed in the dorms and took classes for two months.
“It was really nice because I didn’t have to be homesick,” said Trinity. “I was there four days a week and then I could go home on the weekends.”
As the youngest student in her classes, Trinity found college life a little intimidating; however, as she adjusted to the new environment, she found herself having a great time and learning a lot.
Trinity’s hard work left an impression on Rosser, who said, “She was extremely determined to do her best, never hesitated to ask questions, and was always willing to improve even the smallest of imperfections. With her determination to be successful, she will make a great asset to the trade.”
“Having her first year of welding done so young is going to give her a head start in life,” said Doug. “She's been supported the entire way by her schools and instructors. Thanks to that, she is all ready both to graduate and to be a success in her career as soon as she leaves high school.”
Now that her semester at College is over, Trinity has gone back to high school to finish her senior year. Once she’s graduated she plans to come back to GPRC to complete her second and third year.
“It sets my mind at ease knowing she can always support herself independently because of her skills and certification,” said Doug. “By leaving high school a second-year welder, she can work wherever she wants and is already on the way to her journeyman ticket.”
After her schooling is done, Trinity plans to be a full-time welder. Her focus will be on the artistic route of welding. She would also love to be able to do some teaching, either courses or demonstrations in schools, to get more people interested in the trade she loves.
“She will most likely go further than I will and that's exactly how it should be. Seeing my daughter succeed is the most important success in my life,” said Doug.