For many City of Columbia volunteers, their service is a way of “paying it forward” for a kind gesture someone paid to them. This is the case for our February volunteer of the month, Clay Elledge, the Coordinator of Computer Services at Moberly Area Community College. Clay was approached by a colleague and asked if he would be interested in supervising a student for Columbia’s Career Awareness Related Experience (C.A.R.E) program. He jumped at the opportunity.
The C.A.R.E. program was created to help Columbia youth develop basic skills while working in a professional environment and learning a good work ethic for future career opportunities. As a C.A.R.E. supervisor, Clay has spent time mentoring and instructing his C.A.R.E. trainee while helping to expand his trainee’s technical aptitude within the IT field.
Clay said volunteering for the C.A.R.E. program was an easy decision, as he was grateful for the guidance he received when getting into the IT field. “I was in an electronics program in college, a dying field at the time. I had good professors who took me under their wing and showed me that the building blocks of electronics could take me far in the IT world.” Clay says he enjoys the opportunity to help another young person, “I know this field is not easy to get in to, I just really wanted to help someone else learn the ropes and show them what a job in IT would be like. I enjoy seeing how my student has grown and improved.”
~Written by volunteer Brittany Perrin