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A Great-Fit Career Gives a Vet Satisfaction

//A Great-Fit Career Gives a Vet Satisfaction

A Great-Fit Career Gives a Vet Satisfaction

Manuel Gonzalez has always had a bent toward achievement. An all-American college athlete turned Navy sailor, Manuel single-mindedly pursued a career path toward IT during his military career, even pursuing Seal training in order to get himself closer to his goal. As fate would have it, the IT track was not to be for Gonzalez, who instead became a Master at Arms and was deployed with the USS Denver in 2002.

Manuel Gonzalez serving in Italy aboard the USS Denver

Manuel Gonzalez serving in Italy aboard the USS Denver

Even though Manuel did not enter the IT field, Navy life provided many opportunities to set and achieve goals.

“I always felt I could excel, “ he says. “I felt confident I would have advanced had I stayed in the Navy.”

The job security provided by the military is difficult to find in the civilian world.

The job security provided by the military is difficult to find in the civilian world. Manuel reflects that some of his energy, which was easy to direct while in the military, lost focus upon his return to civilian life in 2005.

“I went through a lot of jobs. I even went back to school and got an associate’s degree in nursing, but I did not continue in that career path. It was all valuable experience, but it’s clear I had to relearn how to be a civilian.”

By the time he fell in love with his now wife, Jennifer, Manuel had already put many of the anxieties of reintroduction to civilian life behind him. But upon his move to Greenville in 2011, Manuel still didn’t have the career trajectory that he desired. He began exploring manufacturing after a friend suggested working for BMW.

Job experience and salary often correspond more than education and salary. Trades allow students to gain experience as they learn.

In today’s job market, on-the-job experience often corresponds with salary to a greater degree than education. Trades allow students to gain experience as they learn.

“I enrolled in Greenville Tech’s BMW scholar program in manufacturing maintenance. It wasn’t for me, but during that time, I met with Steve Hand with Quick Jobs. He suggested I look into becoming a CNC Operator—and he assured me that as a veteran, I could get funds to go through the program to completion.”

Manuel quickly realized that not only would the machinist track at Greenville Tech be a viable and secure career path (Manuel is already employed as an apprentice), he liked the work. It was the settled feeling he’d hoped he would find in a career.

I like what I do. I’m much more satisfied now

“I like what I do. I’m much more satisfied now, and I think that the opportunities provided

[by certificate programs] are more valuable to veterans who can’t pursue a four year degree because they’re older or have a family to support. And I haven’t found the correlation between degree and salary to hold true, which is another benefit of these programs—you get actual job experience quickly.”

To Our Supporters

I had to relearn how to be a civilian.

For high achieving veterans like Manuel Gonzalez, job satisfaction outside of the military can be incredibly elusive. Veteran Scholarships Forever is proud to have created a window of opportunity for Manuel to put his valuable skill set into the South Carolina workforce. Thank you for your past and future contributions to VSF endowments. Together, we’re helping those who’ve worked for our freedom to thrive in life after the service.

2017-01-30T17:54:57+00:00August 24th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments