May E newsletter

Congratulations the Class Of 2019

2019 Grad Award Winners

The YATC family is proud to welcome the Class of 2019 into our alumni group, including the 750th student to complete the program.

 "YATC taught me that family is more than just blood," said 22-year-old Martin Baena, a 2019 graduate who was recognized during the ceremony. "If Mr. Moran were still here today, which he is in all of our hearts, I would thank him for the second chance that nobody else would have given me." Guided by dedicated staff members and volunteer tutors from the community, eight of the 2019 graduates earned high school diplomas and five were pursuing their diplomas following graduation. During the ceremony, 12 graduates were awarded scholarships for continuing education and six received special recognition for notable achievements. These award winners are pictured from left: Martin Baena (Bruce Rossmeyer Memorial Kick Start Scholar); Eduardo Bretz (Outstanding Attendance); Michael Whitaker (Outstanding Attendance); Damian Varona (Turnabout Award); Michael Somers (Jump Start Award) and Jarkevius Nemec (Outstanding Attendance). 

 Joe O'Brien, founder of the O'Brien Automotive Team, received the annual Jim Moran Award, acknowledging his many contributions to the school and its students over the years.

"Joe has been a loyal and dedicated friend to YATC for many years. He is a true 'car guy" at heart. He recognized the value of the automotive skills our graduates gain at YATC and has supported the program ever since. We are so grateful to have Joe on our team." said Terry Routley, executive director


A message from the executive director

“Sometimes we need someone to simply be there. Not to fix anything, or to do anything in particular, but just to let us feel that we are cared for and supported.”

I read the quote above recently and it reminded me a lot of YATC. The author is unknown but it seemed like it could have been written just for us. Care and support are two components of our program that really set us apart. There are many other vocational schools throughout the country, many even right here in Broward County, Florida. There are automotive programs that teach skills like we do at YATC. There are academic remediation programs, support groups, even rehabilitation centers that serve troubled kids. But to me, YATC offers these elements mixed in with a healthy dose of care and support that is like no other.

That special part of our curriculum has been woven into YATC since Jim Moran established the program back in 1984. He knew that the technical aspects of the program were the key to providing a law-abiding, realistic career path for at-risk youth. But making sure that students and graduates know we are here for them no matter what helps them truly change their lives. It’s this formula that has been working for 35 years for hundreds of graduates.

We are fortunate to have our mission set forth by Jim Moran to follow, along with the help of talented Board of Directors, Advisory Board members, volunteers and many generous friends. Thank you for your genuine care and support of our students, graduates and staff members. We couldn’t do it without you!



Terry Routley