NACTEL Student Stories

In 2003, Christian completed Verizon’s Next Step program.  He knew that he wanted to continue his education with telecom-specific curriculum but wasn’t sure where to turn.  Fortunately, a Verizon coworker suggested the NACTEL/PACE program.  Christian contacted the Associate Dean at PACE University, Dr. David Sachs who worked with him to smoothly transition his Next Step credentials into the NACTEL program.   

Today, Christian works at Verizon as a Fiber Optic Equipment Technician transporting long distance telecom and video data from the company’s infrastructure to the network.  This work is highly technical and demands concentrated knowledge of FIOS networks and protocol.   According to Christian, “My work is challenging but the knowledge I gained from the NACTEL curriculum helped me better understand the technology.  I feel very fortunate to work in this field and credit much of my success to the NACTEL program.”

Christian also shares his success with his support group.  He knew from the start that if he involved his family, peers and supervisors in his educational endeavors that his odds of achieving success would increase.   “Education is a big priority for me and a support system is critical.   If people understand your goals and dreams, they will to help you achieve them.  I made it a point to inform my support group about what was going on with my studies; what courses I was taking, upcoming assignments and tests, etc.  My goal of earning a degree became their goal too.”

Christian is currently considering continuing his educational journey to earn a Master’s degree or changing career paths entirely and entering the field of law enforcement.  When asked if he worried that his previous educational pursuits would become invalid he said, “Not at all.  My degree will help me in any arena I enter.  I could use the specific knowledge I’ve gained to do telecom monitoring or infrastructure enhancement.  But most importantly what I take with me is what I learned about myself and my own abilities.  My education will never sit idol or be left on the back burner.”

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