What trade are you in? Electrical
Local Union number: IBEW Local 103
How long were you in? 5 years 6 months
Last rank? Corporal

What do you feel were the most beneficial skills learned while in the military?
While in the military, the most beneficial skills that I’ve learned are critical thinking. By that I mean, learning how to work under stress and making quick decisions to get whatever discrepancy that could arise is handled and fixed. Keeping bearing and tact are other traits I would include with that as well. If you lose your cool and speak or act out a line is not professional and will not get you far. Lastly, having learned discipline and integrity is a big thing to bring to the table because you need discipline and integrity to do the right thing, especially when no one is watching. Having these skills will later form strong relationships and trust.

On a more technical side, in my MOS, I was required to do a year worth of schooling. 6 months learning about electricity (AC/DC theory), how to troubleshoot and test wiring
for voltages and discrepancies. Another 6 months learning about a specific aircraft platform (F18 A/C Super Hornets), the systems involved and how the aircraft actually operates.

What did you do after your contract was up?
After my Active Duty was finished I fortunately had a good amount of vacation time saved up so I had 45 days of paid leave. I knew that time was going to run out so I got
enrolled into Quincy Community College and I also applied for the Boston Fire Department. I was in college while I waited for contact from the fire department.

Why the trades?
I chose a trade because I was a maintainer for years. I worked with my hands, I knew how to pick up some tools and put them to good use and repair things.

How did you hear about H2H?
My childhood best friend Joseph Cruz told me about H2H. He is in the Local 22 and also Army National Guard. He knew what I did in the Marine Corps and asked me if I thought
about getting into the trades and I said “No, haven’t given it much thought.” He told me about fair wages, benefits, healthcare, work conditions, and more and it all sounded good
to me.

How effective were your military skills with your job in the trades?
I would say that my skills are very effective with the trades. Having a military background definitely goes a long way because I know how to get up early and get to work. I know how to pick up my tools and get to work. I know how to think outside the box to get a task done as efficiently and in a timely manner.

What is your current job title?
4th year Electricians Apprentice

Name the top three benefits of joining a union?

  1. Benefits
  2. Healthcare
  3. Fair Wages

If you had it to do over again, would you choose to go the same route?
Absolutely I would. All roads in life you take are uncertain, but if you have a well prepared plan and if something were to happen. You have to assess the situation and come up with a new plan to make it work.

Would you recommend H2H to other veterans? If so, why?
Yes! I would recommend H2H to other veterans because this program allows someone to represent that veteran to a Local. Getting into the 103 was huge for me because thinking
about going into the trades…I didn’t know anyone that was in 103. I didn’t know anyone that could maybe speak up for me and get my foot in the door. I would like to believe that
H2H was that voice for me to get the attention of the local and for the local to give me a chance.

What is the most beneficial tool from utilizing the H2H program?
I think the biggest tool from utilizing H2H would be awareness. I say this because I didn’t know H2H existed before my friend told me about it. If awareness is a tool then it can be utilized for other vets like me. They can get a chance at what the trades of America have to offer.

What would you say to other veterans about utilizing the H2H program?
I would say, “Don’t sleep on H2H!” This program is here for vets to get a chance to start a fresh career. A career that has the benefits and pay that will allow you to live a decent
life and help you provide for a family.