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Transforming Career and Technical


The Harbor Freight Fellows Initiative (HFFI) is a partnership between Big Picture Learning and the

Harbor Freight Tools for Schools program to elevate the respect and resources accorded youth (and their teachers).

We support youth for whom the trades are the appropriate and chosen post secondary path to a fulfilling life as a professional and community member–especially those who have been historically marginalized in the trades through race, ethnicity, or gender bias.  


HFFI compensates apprenticing experiences with professional tradesperson mentors. Fellows work alongside

mentors in real work situations to deepen their interest, develop hands-on practical skills, and broaden the

professional network that will support them as they move through their professional lives. HFFI, CTE teachers, and

industry mentors come together to provide transformative experiences for Fellows and strengthen CTE programs to

develop a cohort of skilled, and committed youth entering the trades.

Harbor Freight Fellows

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Travels with Charlie:
Bloomfield, NJ
HFFI Reaches Across South Carolina!
HFFI Director Charlie Plant meets with Charleston Regional Director Al Jenkins.
Al Jenkins and Leon Burgess.HEIC
Harbor Freight Fellows

Harbor Freight Fellows

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There has been unprecedented demand for Fellowships this year. In order to provide equitable access to this opportunity around the country, we are having to limit Nominations in some regions. Before you nominate a youth, please call Charlie Plant, HFFI National Coordinator.


Fellowship Information

Harbor Freight Full Fellowships 


  • High school seniors and older youth who are committed to pursuing a trade

  • $1,000 scholarship to the youth for 120 hours of apprenticing with a tradesperson Mentor

  • Stipends for trades-based Mentors and supporting staff members (Advisors) at participating organizations may be available

Harbor Freight Explorer Fellowships

  • For youth who are exploring an interest in the trades - often but not necessarily younger students

  • $250 scholarship to the youth for 60 hours of apprenticing with a trades person Mentor.

  • Stipends for trades-based Mentors and supporting staff members (Advisors) at participating organizations may be available.

The Harbor Freight Fellows Initiative has served hundreds of trades bound youth in over 75 schools and 14 states around the country. HFFI is developing partnerships with a wide range of educators and industries around the country. Fellows have successfully completed apprenticing experiences in almost 20 trades.


For more information please view the Partners tab.

Fellow Focus


Param, a senior in high school in the Greater Sacramento Region, completed his fellowship with Harris & Bruno. Coming from a family of welders, as Param’s dad and grandfather owned their own welding shop in India, Param highly enjoyed getting the hands-on experience provided to him through this program. He was often referred to the “go-to guy” in his class as he showed his classmates how to weld, based on the knowledge learned from his mentor, Nick.


Pictured from left to right is Nick from Harris & Bruno, Param, and Param’s father.

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