AAI of WNY: Veterans in Manufacturing
Veterans enter apprenticeship programs with a wide range of skills picked up from their time in the military. Hear what some local veterans currently registered in apprenticeships had to say.
“As a veteran, I believe this industry helps fill in what leaving the military left. The sense of belonging to a team. Working together to accomplish tasks. Having people by your side to help, teach, and show you the way. When I got out of the military, I was very much lost for what my future held for me. Since starting my apprenticeship, I have felt I belong to something greater and feel more purpose and drive in my everyday life.”
- Electronics Technician, Calvary Robotics
“Being in the military prepared me for working in manufacturing lots of ways. Leadership skills is number one, integrity, personal courage…working with my hands. I was a mechanic in the military. It definitely prepared me for working well with my hands.”
- Precision Optics Technician, Optimax Systems, Inc.
“My background in the Marine Corps has had an impact not only in manufacturing but life in general. Working as a team, confidence building, meeting deadlines, working under pressure, attention to detail, and situational awareness are just a few examples of how the Marine Corps has shaped my work ethic…”
- Toolmaker, Cummins Inc.
“It makes you capable of taking instruction, showing initiative, being focused enough to accomplish a task and not give up on that task. To want to achieve it, be goal oriented. I think that is what [being in] the military might bring, a certain kind of discipline.”
-Electrician, Ford Motor Company
“With me, in the military I was a welder, a pipefitter, and a firefighter… You have to learn to be calm and assess the situation before you jump into it…The thing that I noticed the most when I got in the [apprenticeship] program is that when I go on a job site with my journeymen, how calm they are and how they assess the situation way before we even start working... You have to have the discipline to be a journeyman.”
-Machine Repairer, Ford Motor Company
“In the military, you learn to be dedicated, just like in the apprenticeship program.”
-Apprentice at Cummins Inc.