July 24, 2018 | Alyssa Fortune has been honing her trade skills with the Historic Preservation Training Center since 2017, when she was a member of the inaugural Traditional Trades Youth Initiative (now known as the Traditional Trades Apprenticeship Program). The program exposed Alyssa and seven other AmeriCorps members to historic preservation techniques and philosophy. She received training in masonry, woodcrafting, and carpentry, and gained excellent exposure to the National Park Service and the preservation career field.
Throughout her term, Alyssa gained hands-on experience in preservation trades from experienced NPS craftspeople. She worked on projects refinishing and restoring historic structures at three national monuments: Gettysburg National Battlefield, Antietam National Battlefield, and Fort McHenry National Monument. She developed skills in professional communication, worksite safety, and machinery use. Her favorite project was working at the Poffenberger Farm House at Antietam National Battlefield: “I learned a lot about painting, carpentry repairs, and building a deck from the ground up. I learned that is important to have a solid foundation and roof before spending time on the exterior.”
“I am most proud about learning enough to correct the mistakes I made in the beginning. I am proud to learn how to do something properly.”
-Alyssa Fortune, HPTC AmeriCorps Member