Hector Rosa graduated last week from Texas State Technical College with an associate degree in Building Construction Technology.
But that’s not all. Before even putting on his cap and gown, the 40-year-old had a job offer in hand and started this week with Morton Buildings in Houston as a Level 1 carpenter.
When did you first learn about your job offer?
I learned about this job offer the week of commencement. I had other job offers leading up to this, but Morton’s made me an offer I could not refuse. Receiving these job offers, these opportunities, is exciting; it’s a new chapter for me. This just goes to show that you can accomplish anything at any age.
How did TSTC prepare you for your career?
TSTC’s Building Construction Technology is amazing, and not only because I graduated from the program. The majority of the training you receive is hands-on, real-world training and exposes you to nearly everything you will face out in the workforce. And of course, none of it would be possible without experienced and knowledgeable instructors who showed us the right way, gave one-on-one instruction if needed and always pushed us to do our best.
Who has had the greatest influence on your success?
The person with the greatest influence on my success is my wife. She has my back and supports me no matter what. When times get tough and I feel like quitting, she’s right there cheering me on and motivating me to keep going. This is a second career for me after working many years as a supervisor at a local juvenile detention center, and she always told me the sacrifice we made when I came to TSTC would be worth it.
What are your future goals?
My goal is to return to TSTC as a Building Construction Technology instructor. My instructors have made such a great impact in my life that I want to do the same for others.
What would you tell a student thinking of pursuing a two-year degree vs. a four-year degree?
I would tell a student that a two-year degree moves you ahead and gives you benefits that a four-year degree does not. With a technical degree, you have a leg up in industry because you have the skills that are in demand, making you more marketable among companies, which in turn provides a great career with great pay.
What is your advice for future TSTC students?
When the road gets tough, don’t give up. Keep your head high and your eye on the prize. I promise, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.