For more than two decades, Hoang Phan worked whatever odd jobs he could find to keep the lights on and food on the table. But after enrolling in an industrial maintenance apprenticeship, he is now well on his way to a professional career.

In 2015, Hoang started working at Kroger Manufacturing-Centennial Farms Dairy in Atlanta. He was hired as a loadout team member, someone who organizes beverages and loads them onto trucks for distribution.His employers appreciated his hard work, and noticed his penchant for tinkering with items that needed improvements – a habit that earned him the nickname “Mr. Fix-it” – and encouraged him to further develop his skills through an apprenticeship with the company. In 2016, Hoang was the first individual selected for Kroger Manufacturing’s new industrial maintenance apprenticeship, a program the business hopes to expand to all 35 manufacturing locations in the United States. There are currently 19 apprentices.

Read full blog on the U.S. Department of Labor website