Construction Ready Has Helped Lanray Bakare Thrive Since Leaving His Native Nigeria
Story and photos by Allen Allnoch
The way Lanray Bakare sees it, going without pay for a month-long Construction Ready education is a great investment in one’s future. And he’s right – it’s certainly paid off for him and hundreds of other graduates of the nearly four-year-old program.
In Lanray’s case, education is an ongoing priority. He studied mechanical engineering in his native Nigeria before coming to the U.S. in 2013. Once in the States, he did some work with a roofing company and a satellite TV installer. “My nature has always been to do things with my hands and make things come out the way I want them to,” he says.
He came to Construction Ready at Build Cobb in 2016. Now he’s a Job Project Analyst (JPA) for Vankirk Electric, where he’s impressing his bosses and gaining ever-more responsibility.
“I think people don’t understand how great [Construction Ready] is, because they don’t get paid for 30 days,” says Lanray, a Mableton resident. “I felt like the greatest injustice you can do to yourself is not to take the risk that is necessary to benefit you in the long run. It will pay for itself.”
Lanray was hired initially by another electrical contractor. When that opportunity didn’t work out, he reached out to CEFGA for help and was connected to VanKirk. He’s worked on numerous sites around metro Atlanta, most recently an apartment complex in Dunwoody.
As a JPA, he helps oversee inventory management, quality control and inventory control on a project, working with superintendents to forecast operational needs and procure materials, and providing reports back to the corporate office.
“It has been a pleasure having Lanray on my team,” says Frederick Simpson, Senior Job Project Analyst for VanKirk. “His attention to detail, analytical skills and eagerness to learn have made him very successful in this role.”
His affable demeanor no doubt helps as well. And that eagerness to learn is evident throughout a conversation about his work.
“I appreciate the help I get from my project managers, their willingness to help me learn,” he says. “It’s been a tremendous growth [opportunity].”
A desire to expand his knowledge and skill set motivated him to move to the U.S. His father is here as well, as is a younger brother who’s also a Construction Ready graduate. He has a wife and 7-year-old daughter back home, and is helping them through the lengthy U.S. immigration process so they can join him soon.
For Lanray, America has proved to be the land of opportunity he heard about. And CEFGA has been the biggest factor in fulfilling that promise.
“I’m really glad I found out about CEFGA,” he says. “I just can’t say enough about the program. I take every chance I get to tell someone else about it. It’s really put me out there to take on challenges and apply initiative with the knowledge I’ve gained and move forward from there. I would take such an opportunity a million times.”