Sometimes the secret to getting started on an educational journey is knowing who to ask for help.
Jacob Vinson is a recent graduate of Mt. Hood Community College’s (MHCC’s) Ford Automotive Student Service Educational Training (ASSET) program and Dustin LaValley is a current ASSET student. Both have utilized veteran benefits – Dustin as a veteran
himself and Jacob as a dependent – to pay for their education.
But transitioning from life in the military to life as a student can be complicated and utilizing veteran benefits as a dependent isn’t the most intuitive process. That is why both students went to MHCC Veteran Services to get started.
While they both come from different backgrounds, both have the same advice for any veteran or dependent: Go to Veteran Services and ask a lot of questions.
“Don’t wait until the last minute to get things done. The sooner you can get in there and get your foot in the door, the better. It will take the weight off of your shoulders once class starts,” Dustin said.
Both students are now seeing success through the ASSET program, which partners with 27 Ford dealerships to provide students with the knowledge and skills they need while being paid as an apprentice.
“The Ford ASSET program got my attention because I was able to work and make money while I was learning and I knew I would have a good job afterward,” Jacob said.
Like many Ford ASSET graduates, Jacob was picked up as a full-time automotive technician at Sandy Suburban Ford immediately after he finished the program.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there will be a need for more entry-level service technicians to perform basic service and repair as the number of vehicles on the road is expected to increase.
“I don’t think as many people want to do manual labor, so that job security definitely made me want to pursue automotive,” Jacob said.