Where you are from? Derry, Pennsylvania
What sparked your interest in a career in the skilled trades? In July of 2017, I underwent surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff in my right shoulder. After four months of post-op rehabilitation, at which time I was released back to work, I found myself unemployed for the first time in twenty-four years. This is where my journey began.
After months of soul searching, I decided that I no longer wanted to be a healthcare worker. I love working with my hands. Whether it’s fixing things around my house, helping family or friends with projects, or splitting wood to heat our home during the winter months, a hard day’s work has always made me happy. Two weeks after my high school graduation, not yet ready to take on a college experience, I joined the United States Air Force and was trained to be an electrician. After two years of active duty service, I became a member of the 171st Air National Guard and used my training to put myself though college. Now, after a twenty-four-year career in radiology, I am ready to return to a career in which I had taken so much pride all those years ago.
What school will you be attending? Triangle Tech of Greensburg is my home away from home. The director and assistant director make every student feel special. From the first day of class, they reached out to every student, learning all our names by the end of the first week. I have spoken to both these men at length about my life and they have told me their stories as well. I love my school and could not be more excited for my future. The opportunities that lay in front of me are countless. There is gaping hole in the United States for skilled tradesman and I plan on doing my part to help fill it.
What field of study are you embarking on? Maintenance Electrician and Construction Technology
How did you hear about the 2018 Work Ethic Scholarship? I found this scholarship through online research to help fund for my education and this one was very interesting after growing up watching Mike Rowe's Dirty Jobs show, and later in life learning that he is an Eagle Scout which I can relate to.
What area of Mike Rowe’s S.W.E.A.T pledge resonates the most with you as you pursue your new career? I love this question because answering it will explain how I was able to take, what could have been, a devastating time in my life and make it one of the happiest. The company I worked for was not able to hold my position after my FLMA ran out. I knew this was a possibility, but once it became a reality, I was in shock. What now, I asked myself. Mike Rowe’s S.W.E.A.T. Pledge #8 reads, “I believe the most annoying sounds in the world are whining and complaining. I will never make them. If I am unhappy in my work, I will either find a new job, or find a way to be happy.” That is exactly what I did.