The welding program at the River Parishes Community College Technical College Gonzales Campus awarded the first female apprenticeship to Kaitlyn Purpera of Sunshine. She received scholarships through the American Welding Society and Zachry, meaning her education is now entirely paid for. Purpera currently works two days a week at Zachry, and she spends the rest of her time in school finishing her education. Purpera noted that being a woman in a male-dominated field comes with added pressure. She said she wants to show other girls who are interested in the field that they can achieve great things too.