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Mira Costa TCI: Supporting Those Who Support Us


San Diego’s Mira Costa College has something of a hidden gem.  Their Technology Career Institute (TCI) provides outstanding technical education and career training to adult learners, particularly those seeking a career change.  As described on their website, “TCI provides job training in the fields of advanced manufacturing, engineering, healthcare, security, veterinary science and professional skills training.” Creative Electron has long been a supporter of TCI, as well as a beneficiary of their remarkable work.

For years now, Creative Electron has participated in a variety of programs in support of TCI including regularly providing shadowing opportunities and internships to students from each cohort, as well as providing an X-ray inspection system for their engineering lab. Our CEO, Dr. Bill Cardoso, has long been on the college’s foundation board.  Many of TCI’s graduates have launched their new careers with us.  “While the technical training students receive is excellent, we’ve been particularly impressed with TCI’s emphasis on coaching the soft skills,” said Creative Electron’s Mariam Ortiz.  How impressed? “About a third of our current staff completed training at TCI,” said Ms. Ortiz.

Case in point: Meet Dorrell Davis.  Mr. Davis had built a successful career in the food and beverage service industry, but found that career abruptly interrupted by the Covid pandemic.  “Since I was a kid, I was always taking things apart, trying to figure out how they work,” said Mr. Davis.  So, when presented with the opportunity, this self-described life-long tinkerer seized the day, and enrolled in a TCI program.  That combination of curiosity, established customer service skill, and the technical training he received at TCI, were all Mr. Davis need to embark on a successful new career as a Field Service Technician… that’s right, at Creative Electron.

‘Turns out, it’s it pretty expensive to provide top notch technical training.  At a cost of about seven thousand dollars per students to attend the four-month program, but for grants and other support, TCI would be out of reach for many trainees.  Many students who attend Mira Costa’s TCI are able to do so because of a variety of funding sources that cover all or part of their tuition.  When Creative Electron learned that one of their primary funding sources would no longer be providing scholarships, Dr. Cardoso and his team decided to create a scholarship that would help fill the gap.  The Creative Electron scholarship fund is intended to promote opportunities for low income, women, and Latinos in STEM fields.  Mr. Davis emphasized the importance of such financial support saying “At that time, I’m not sure I could have taken the risk of investing the full cost of the program, not knowing then what the outcome would be.”  Creative Electron is grateful that Mr. Davis received the support he needed to attend TCI, ultimately resulting in another great addition to our team.

So, yes, we’re decidedly passionate about the TCI program. “Mira Costa’s TCI has been successfully producing skilled, employment ready contributors who are critical to the growth of our local economy. Creative Electron has experienced that directly, so when a key funding source for the program dried up, we felt a responsibility to pitch in,” said Dr. Cardoso.  Because we know that our experience with TCI, and that of Mr. Davis are not unique, we would encourage others to support this truly fantastic, local gem.  Helping Mira Costa’s TCI grow, ultimately helps us all grow.

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