UNION, Mo. — Before brazing his first copper pipe, Herman Hueffmeier was interested in HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) systems.
“I could never do it with school, time, money. Money is a big thing,” he said.
Putting food on the table meant putting aside his passion.
“Yeah, there’s not much time for anything else right now,” Hueffmeier said.
Jessica Brown has a similar story.
“It’s something that has always interested me. I wanted to learn it at a young age,” she said. “I know the boxing world is not for me. I am an active person and this is something that suits me well, I think.
Both were ready to turn the page on their careers, so Hueffmeier and Brown took the road less traveled to East Central College in Union, Missouri.
In June, the college received a $100,000 donation from rock band Metallica’s nonprofit organization, the All Within My Hands Foundation. The band’s Metallica Scholars initiative provides scholarships for students pursuing careers in welding, HVAC, industrial maintenance, and precision machining.
“It’s huge for the group,” said Renee Richardson, the foundation’s director of philanthropy.
“We could really see that there was a need. We could see that the schools had students who wanted to learn these careers, and we could use the Metallica voice to amplify that these are great jobs.
These Metallica Fellows are using the funds to fuel their future.
“It’s really cool that they’re using their popularity to give back,” Brown said. “I couldn’t be more grateful.”
“I can’t thank them enough,” Hueffmeier said. “It meant a lot to me.”
Built for success, these students say nothing else matters as they strive to achieve their career goals.
“I had an opportunity and I took it and ran with it,” Hueffmeier said.
A heavy metal band helps shape the next generation of metalworkers. It’s music to our ears.
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