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Graduate Stories

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Finding a Real Career: Branch Service Manager Cristian Raymundo

"From the point where I went to UTI and talked to admissions, to them helping me find a plan, I was set on what I needed to do."


Cristian Raymundo didn’t really remember how to be a civilian. Life as a Marine is very different than that of typical Americans, and having been stationed in Okinawa, Japan, he was still far away from the world he was about to step back into—in more ways than one. Still, he assumed his career transition would be easier than it was.

“As I was applying to different state jobs it was a bit difficult. I knew I had to find a solution to what I was going to do. I needed a real job, I needed a career. From the point where I went to UTI and talked to admissions, to them helping me find a plan,  I was set on what I needed to do.”

Cristian graduated from UTI's automotive and diesel technology program and is now the Branch Service Manager at Penske Truck Leasing in Braintree.  “One of the things I love about the diesel and automotive industry is that it’s always changing. You can go ahead and think that you know everything then a whole new batch of technology is introduced. It’s amazing how it constantly changes.”

The environment at UTI helped Cristian transition into a civilian career, he found it a supportive place to learn and the instructors easy to relate to. He liked the hands-on experience and seeing how the skills he was learning are applied in the real world. Especially valuable to Cristian were the soft-skills he learned at UTI, like how to communicate professionally and maintaining a positive attitude and appearance. “It’s not just about what I learned, but the other things that they instilled in us. It’s the simple things, like showing up on time and making sure that your uniform is proper, these mean a lot.”

For Cristian, training to become an auto mechanic made sense. Not everyone wants to work in an office and he believes a career in the trades can be a practical decision for those who have an idea of the type of career they’d like to pursue. “There’s no longer that stigma of being a mechanic. You can’t just go to college and think that the world is going to be handed to you. You need to know what you want to do and what you want to be.”

At Penske Truck Leasing, Cristian sees how the right education can benefit students in developing the skills and attitude employers are looking for. “One of the first things we look for is if they went to school – do they have any type of technical background? Those who went to UTI stand out,” he says. Cristian also suggests that grads seeking jobs research the companies to which they’re applying and look for places that offer advancement opportunities and a career path.

Change is difficult, no matter where you are in life, and for those fresh out of the military, finding your way as a civilian can be confusing. It can be tough to find a direction that seems like the right one, but for Cristian Raymundo, UTI helped guide him to the job and life he has today.


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