Faces of Manufacturing

“I’m proud of you, dad” messages motivate local man in WorkAdvance success

At a time when Ja’Tice Provitt was searching for career consistency, he saw a WorkAdvance flyer posted on social media by Warren Forward. It’s one of the organizations that MVMC partnered with to get the program up and running in Trumbull County.

Provitt, who’s 46, took advantage of the opportunity and joined the first-ever cohort held in Warren in December 2023 at Trumbull Community Action Program.

Faith in the process

“I was doing mostly landscaping before going to WorkAdvance. I needed steady work, so this seemed like an opportunity to get that going. I took a leap of faith,” he said.

When that happened, Provitt never gave up.

“I was a little overwhelmed at first. I was rusty with the math, but they walked us through it and helped us out. I dusted the cobwebs off.”

He says the career coaching is also helpful. Participants learn about good communication, workplace behavior and get assistance with removing barriers to employment.

Hard work reaps rewards

After completing WorkAdvance, Provitt interviewed with Liberty Steel Industries in Warren and was hired in February 2024 in packaging.

“My day starts at 5 a.m. until 1:30 p.m., or it could go to 3:30 p.m. It depends on the orders for the day,” he said. “Some days it’s way more than others, and you’re constantly going.”

Provitt says his new manufacturing career has been a good change and brings peace of mind.

“Like health care. I’m getting older, and I needed something I could rely on. I don’t have time to sit around and think. I’m completely occupied when I’m here. Then, when I leave, I can go do my landscaping, too.”

He now has more financial freedom with a regular paycheck and making money from his business.

“Doing this was worth it. I’m trying to incorporate both jobs. Now, I don’t have to worry about winter time and making ends meet.”

Thinking ahead

Provitt is satisfied with his career path, but he’s open to learning new skills to advance within Liberty Steel.

“I want to eventually train on the slitter. That’s a pretty interesting job. However, I would like to be able to learn everything.”

The slitter takes a coil of aluminum or steel and cuts it into specified lengths and widths as it runs through the machine.

Support and encouragement

WorkAdvance has launched Provitt forward in life, and it’s something he highly recommends to anyone who needs a new start.

“It’s for the betterment of yourself, so go for it.”

He gets a lot of support from his eight children. The oldest is 30, and the youngest is 11.

They also understand and acknowledge what he’s accomplished.

“I get ‘I’m proud of you dad’ and texts sometimes. One day, I got a message, and I had to go into the bathroom to get myself together. That was a good one from my 26-year-old son. He made me feel good.”

There’s no doubt the WorkAdvance program is changing lives. For those hesitating to go through the program, Provitt has some last words of encouragement.

“If I can do it, anyone can do it. You have nothing to lose.”