Ex-Felon Turned Machine Shop Supervisor Shares His Story + How to Square a Block

September 30, 2022 1:36 pm


Hear Mike and Darren, both ex-felons, talk about what it is like to build a career in CNC Machining after doing time.

In this episode of Breaking the Cycle, you’ll meet Mike, a member of Rise Up Industries CNC Machine Operating Apprenticeship Program. Mike grew up in San Diego. He faced lots of hardships growing up. Being involved in the juvenile justice system at a young age led into a series of incarcerations as an adult. During his last incarceration of 15 years, Mike decided he wanted to turn his life around. This led him to Rise Up Industries’ CNC Machining Apprenticeship Program.

Mike will introduce you to Darren, Rise Up Industries’ Shop Supervisor, to talk about what it was like to build a career in the metalworking industry after being incarcerated. Then, with today’s demo, you will learn step by step how to square a block on the Prototrak.

Rise Up Industries, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, operates an 18-month Reentry Program for formerly gang-involved individuals recently released from incarceration. The program is in its seventh year of operation and provides comprehensive services from employment and job training to counseling and financial literacy.

A key component of their Reentry Program is the Machine Shop Social Enterprise, where members are trained for careers as CNC (Computer Numeric Control) machine operators. 100% of Reentry Program graduates were employed at a living wage immediately upon graduation by local manufacturing companies.


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