It is a lesson that has served Joseph well, as he went on to earn three degrees at Mercer, bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Thomas Edison State College, and a Ph.D. in Management from Walden University. He is an employee of PSE&G, where he trains technicians for the entire state.
“Anything is possible if you choose to do it,” Joseph said. “It’s all a matter of what limits you put on yourself.”
Joseph was one of three Mercer EET alumni who participated in a panel discussion Oct. 19 during the EET pizza party, an event that was first held in 2008, and has evolved into a networking event involving students and alumni.
“The party is an opportunity to socialize with peers and with those that have previously been through the EET program,” Bittner said. “Alumni frequently look forward to coming back.”
Two other alumni also shared stories of their MCCC experience: Duane Brown, currently a test engineer with PSE&G, and Victor Guzman, owner of Trenton-based Jireh Technologies, a designer and manufacturer of specialty analytical instruments. Both credit Mercer with giving them their start.
“Mercer College gave me the foundation to be where I am today,” Brown told the students. “You guys are in a great place, and the people here are definitely here to help you.”
A 2010 graduate, Brown expects to complete his bachelor’s degree in May and then pursue a master’s at the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
Guzman went from Mercer straight into the workforce, landing a position at Princeton Instruments, a manufacturer of specialty cameras used for scientific research and industrial imaging. He said that in spite of the fact that the job required three years of experience, the hiring manager was impressed with him and gave him an opportunity.
“If you have an inkling, go for it,” DeFino said. “You’ll have a lot of opportunities, and eventually you may be doing very little of the hands-on work you do in class. But they are stepping stones to where you want to be.”
“He gave me that chance, and when he left the company a few years later, I took his position as supervisor for the manufacturing floor,” Guzman said. “If you work hard, you’ll get there.”
EET Professor Dom DeFino said there was a lesson to be learned from Guzman’s experience: Often employers write job requirements without considering the available applicants.
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