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Apprentices gain life skills at Seneca Sawmill

Seneca Sawmill has been around for over 60 years and in that time has become something of a landmark in our community.

Posted: Feb 3, 2020 4:38 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- Seneca Sawmill has been around for over 60 years, and in that time has become something of a landmark in our community.

They do more than just give people the skills to be successful in their work -- they are giving them the skills to be successful in life.

Seneca offers a variety of apprenticeships from electrical, to millwright, and saw filing work.

RELATED: SENECA SAWMILL TRAINS WORKERS FOR SUCCESS

For their electrical program, they have a relationship with Lane Community College so their apprentices receive free schooling while they complete the program.

Sheri Gabert is an electrical apprentice at Seneca, and she says work is not without its challenges, but that it is worth it. 

"You learn something every single day," said Gabert. "The more the challenge, the more reward. It's satisfying to know you can look back four years ago and see how far you've come and you know work as a team with all the guys out there. It's really a cool opportunity."

Gabert says it takes a hard worker and someone who is self motivated to be successful in this trade, but that's it.

She also says she knew this path was right for her from a young age.

"Growing up from a young age I always was active and liked to get my hands in things so it was only the perfect decision for me to be in a trade and I have always liked electrical because it's challenging (and) rewarding," she said.

Starting wages for an apprentice start around $20, but once someone graduates to journeyman level, pay starts in the $30s.

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