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Mahayk, Swain

Swain Mahayk
Acalanes Class of 2004
Worked at his parents’ motel, then managed a motel and took classes at DVC, Enterred Welder Training Program, Works as an Apprentice Welder with a side business as a Jewelry Designer

At Acalanes, Swain says he was not the best student and not the worst. After graduation, he spent four years working at a motel his parents owned in Sacramento and then began managing a motel in Concord, while taking business classes at DVC. When a motel guest (a welder) suggested that Swain look into the welding trade, he decided he would. He took a welding course at Laney College which helped him to decide this was a good direction for him. Despite his parents’ disappointment that he was no longer pursuing business, Swain applied and (out of hundreds of applicants) was one of a small number accepted to the Concord Pipe Fitters’ Union in Concord. He entered their training program, becoming an Apprentice Welder. He gets hands-on training from journeymen welders during the day and takes coursework two evenings a week. His courses include advanced drawing (to be able to draw and interpret blueprints) and welding courses. He is currently working for Solar City as an Apprentice Welder and enjoying his life. In fact, in his spare time, Swain has started a side business designing and creating jewelry, using semi-precious stones and metal. He recently had a showing of his jewelry at the Mezzanine in San Francisco. 

His advice? “Do something that makes you happy. Don’t be afraid to fail and don’t be afraid of change.”