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Prototype and Design Student Works Full Time While Getting Degree

Scott Mader

Scott Mader

Prototype and Design grad

NWTC has been a great fit for me. I was able to keep my full-time job and take care of my general education credits online without the hassle of a commute. Some of my program courses were offered over the summer. That gave me more time to work during the school year, as well as time to pursue an additional certificate related to my degree.

The instructors have constantly challenged me to build upon my skills, and have supported me in my pursuit of a new career. My classmates have been awesome, and it's been great sharing my classes with other students that can collaborate on such a high level. I was part of a group that worked on a model farm for agriculture events like the state fair, and each member was able to bring a high level of expertise to the project. Each person had their own strengths, and together we were able to make a top-notch project that we're all very proud of.

I have one job offer already on the table and am in the late stages of interviews with several other employers, all within my field.

My advice to future NWTC students: Stay focused, get to know your instructors, and push yourself. Listen and collaborate with your peers. They may be an invaluable network for you. Take the time to do your FAFSA early and apply for scholarships- you never know what you might get.

I went back to school after an on-the-job injury landed me in a dead-end position. One of the biggest obstacles was finances. My wife, who had been homeschooling our older son and caring for our baby, went back to work to support us, and I kept my second job as a part-time manager at a hardware store. Scholarships and grants covered some of our expenses, but I do have some loans to pay off as well. Our budget has been tight for the last few years as I've worked toward my degree, but I know that any job that I am chosen for will pay better than the one I left and should put us back into a comfortable lifestyle. I've also been away from home a lot, and I know it's frustrating for my wife and kids, but we've all agreed that once I graduate, I'll be able to be home more and the sacrifices will pay off in the end. 

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