Lauren Williams thought she knew what she wanted to do with her life. An avid artist, she figured her passion would easily transition into a career.
"Before Washtenaw Community College, I took art classes at a career center and tried graphic design at a local college," Williams said. "It wasn't for me."
Not sure what direction to take with her life, Williams took a step back from her education. It was through a chance recommendation by a friend that she found the welding program at WCC.
"I never thought I would get into it as a career, but I love it," said Williams, who earned her degree in welding and fabrication in 2014. "It has been awesome and the classes are amazing."
The right career path
"As a single mom I needed career stability for myself and my son," Williams said. "Welding provides me with a stable career field that is challenging and fun."
The fact that she studied her craft at a school that has produced numerous champion welders, including the 2013 SkillsUSA national welding titleholder, doesn't hurt either.
"WCC is the best," said Williams. "The instructors want you to succeed, they want you to learn and want you to grow."
Advice for others
While juggling school and a child can be a struggle, Williams knew the effort was worth it. She even managed to open her own business, Williams Custom Fabrications, which is thriving thanks to social media.
"You have the strength to do whatever you want to do as long as you put your mind to it," she said. "No one else is going to do it for you. Work hard at what you do and put your passion into it."