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After high school, Ron Gallegos attended the University of Denver. But due to a financial set-back, he had to forgo formal education during his junior year in favor of full-time employment. He began working different jobs, first managing a local gas station, and eventually getting a job as an area manager for a facilities services company that handled maintenance projects for malls and department stores across Colorado.
His work took him all over the state, seven days a week, but with two young kids at home, he knew he needed a change of pace. In order to grow professionally and to have the career he wanted, Ron needed new skills. He took a leap of faith and signed up for a PC technician (A+) certification course at Emily Griffith Technical College.
Soon after classes began, Ron attended a job fair hosted by Skillful at Emily Griffith. There he met a Skillful representative and was immediately interested in everything Skillful had to offer. Skillful’s partnership with LinkedIn and the focus on skills-based hiring practices impressed him. After the job fair, Ron continued to stay in touch with the Skillful rep and soon attended several other Skillful events where he met local IT professionals and leading employers.
Not only was Ron discovering what types of IT skills were most in demand, but he was also networking and learning how to land high-growth jobs. In Ron’s own words, “I’ve been able to continue to grow with Skillful and use it for so much, including career coaching and networking. It’s helped me widen my scope for potential employment opportunities.”
Ron continued to work with Skillful representatives and coaches, who helped to update his resume, improve his LinkedIn profile, and set up informational interviews with employees at local IT companies. By the time Ron had completed his coursework at and received two IT certificates, he already had several job offers on the table.
Yet Ron decided to take another leap of faith and open his own tech support business. He values the ability to work from home and be there for his two young children. And with the networking skills he had honed and relationships he had built over the past nine months, he was able to quickly build up an impressive clientele.
Along with the flexibility to spend more time with his kids, Ron’s now making more money with his own business than he was before as an area manager, and he sees a clear career path ahead of him.
“It’s all looking bright for me,” Ron stated recently.
He credits Skillful and its support system for broadening his vision. He’s continuing to add skills to his resume, and considering bringing on additional staff to help grow his business. Ron is also giving back to the Skillful community, volunteering as a mentor for others interested in getting into the IT field.