- Suncoast Technical College
A Lifetime of Service Leads to a New Calling: How Pamela Found Her Passion in Carpentry and Community Service
Pamela Meyers is a powerhouse; a retired JAG lawyer, she has lived all over the world and served her country with distinction. But even after a lifetime of adventure and service, Pamela was hungry for more. So, she did something that would inspire many of us: she signed up for the Carpentry Program at Suncoast Technical College's North Port Branch.
And what an amazing experience it was! Pamela discovered a new passion for building, sawing, and hammering her way to a new set of skills. But that was only the beginning. When presented with the opportunity to select her own project by Bill Mousseau, her instructor, Pamela knew precisely what she wanted to do. Build a tiny home.
Pamela and her husband have land in Tennessee, and they want to use it to help those who have served their country or lost loved ones in combat. The couple plans to provide a peaceful retreat in the mountains for veterans, first responders, and gold-star families.
But that's not all. Pamela's social work and psychology background has led her to work with children in foster care. She knows firsthand how difficult it can be for those who age out of the system to find housing and get started in life. That's why she wants to use her carpentry skills to build a tiny home for these young people and teach them valuable homesteading skills that will help them thrive, with the hope of building even more tiny homes in the future.
Thanks to the guidance and expertise of Mr. Mousseau and his unwavering commitment to his students, he has been instrumental in making this project a reality. He's the kind of teacher who goes all-in to support his students, sharing his knowledge and passion to help them learn, grow, and develop their skills. The project is an excellent learning opportunity for the students, who are mastering not just one skill, but many as they work on this ambitious project.
The project has also brought together multiple programs at Suncoast Technical College, including the Electricity program at the North Port Branch and the Plumbing program at the Sarasota Campus. Students from these programs will be working together on the build, gaining invaluable hands-on experience, and learning from their instructors and each other over multiple cohorts.
The project has faced its fair share of challenges, including weathering Hurricane Ian and Nicole. Thankfully, the tiny house survived the storm, a testament to the quality of the work done by Pamela and her classmates. The student's hard work and attention to detail ensured that the tiny house was able to withstand the elements, even at the early stages of construction.
We can't wait to see the finished product and witness the positive impact it will have on the lives of those who will benefit from it. Pamela's story is a testament to the power of lifelong learning and the importance of giving back to our communities.
Suncoast Technical College is proud to have played a role in Pamela's incredible journey and looks forward to empowering more students to learn new skills and make a difference in the world. Who knows? Maybe the next Pamela is out there right now, waiting to be inspired to learn something new and change the world for the better.