What We Do
Our focus on collaboration over competition insists that we not only “foster and promote community collaborations”, but that we take the initiative to create a way to “assist and provide relief for the LMI demographics in our community through programs that provide pathways to educational, economic and social mobility.
To that end, we have created the Levels of Leadership Initiative. With this initiative, we seek to further the leadership potential of our scholars and expose them to positive experiences that help enlarge their vision of themselves. Our goal is to help them showcase skills and talents they can begin to capitalize on immediately upon entering the workforce.
Levels of Leadership takes a two-pronged approach to this. We focus on the construction trades and facilities maintenance as a means for our youth to learn a skill that will earn them a livable wage with little to know debt upon completion of training. We recognize that not every high school student or post graduate desires to go to college and many lack the resources or know how to attain them. Additionally, we recognize that college can create a large debt for these students upon their completion. Rather than urge youth to the path of college, the military, or the general work force, Men of Destiny believes the construction trades offers an alternative.
Along with training in the trades we offer our scholars training in soft skills to include leadership, resilience skills and emotional intelligence. Men of Destiny’s work, through its Levels of Leadership initiative, is important because it offers our scholars an opportunity to earn a level One certification in Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC), or Electrical that will allow them to attain a paid apprenticeship with an Electrical, HVAC or construction company. The soft skills they learn will help them to maintain their apprenticeships by allowing them to navigate the social and emotional challenges they may encounter as they step into an industry with a culture or demographic population they may not be used to or where they are the minority.
Men of Destiny is committed to ensuring that graduates from our Levels of Leadership initiative are “equally collaborative in economic and social environments as marked by valuable, relevant and equitable contributions to the overall advancement of the society”.
Men of Destiny believes its work is important to the community because through its Levels of Leadership initiative, it provides LMI youth the opportunity to advance themselves socially and emotionally while attaining physical skills they can use to improve their own dwellings or initiate their own business as an entrepreneur.
All participants in the Level of Leadership initiative must complete their OSHA-10 certificate and NCCER Core curriculum before they can commence HVAC or Electrical Level One training. The completion of the Core curriculum alone introduces tool usage, construction terminology and plans reading, coupled with practical projects enough that the scholar will know how to complete certain small tasks within a home that most residents don’t know how to do themselves. Therein lies the opportunity for entrepreneurship as a handyman/woman. The added soft skills will help these scholars deal with their customers in a mature and productive manner. Continuation in the initiative will specialize these skills in HVAC or Electrical with an more in-depth understanding of emotional intelligence, leadership and resilience further warrantying success in the professional realm of these trades.