“I didn’t have a set goal in high school and I didn’t do any planning before graduation. I knew I wanted to do something with my life, but I didn’t know what. My plan was to enlist in the army and serve my country, but everyone told me to go to college instead. I applied and went to NSCC, but I was lost about what I wanted to do. I liked information technology, but IT is such a big topic with so many specialties. There were too many choices, and I didn’t know what I wanted, so I took a break from school and went to work in retail. My break became a year, then two.
“NSCC helped me set up a support system to make it through.”
I went to Year Up after hearing about it from a friend. At first it was pretty intimidating and the infractions scared me… I didn’t want to get fired. But over time, I felt I belonged there. I could tell the staff took my learning seriously, so I started taking it seriously, too. They prepared me for my internship and the real world. They helped me understand what I wanted to do and how to be successful.
I did my Year Up internship at the Lynn Community Health Center. This time I wasn’t scared; I was prepared. People there respect me, and gave me knowledge, support, and room to grow. At the end of my internship, I learned that there were no available positions. With the thought of not getting hired, I started to worry. What if my next job didn’t treat me the same way? Then the Chief Information Officer of the company called me in. He told me so many people loved me there and that the employees pushed for me to stay. Five years later, I’m one of the senior people on my team, working as a level two technician. To succeed in this job, you need to be dedicated and hard-working, and you need great customer service. When I help someone troubleshoot their computer, I get to know them. It makes them less anxious and they feel better. It’s a big reason why a lot of people ask for me when they have an IT issue.
A few years ago, I decided to go back to school. Now that I have a great job, it made sense for me to get my degree. I was a different student the second time around. I had more motivation and confidence, and I was able to show the best version of myself. NSCC helped me set up a support system to make it through. The counselors went out of their way to make sure I was successful. They also helped me pick the classes in computer networking I wanted to take. The first time around, I had no plan. This time, I chose a path that worked specifically for me. My next step is to take Cisco’s CCNA. It’s a challenging exam, but now I know how to study.”