Chris Kelling started repairing television sets when he was just nine years old. He was fascinated with electronics. By the time he was in high school electronics were becoming disposable and his interest turned to computers.
Chris tried to go to a university, but that was too cost prohibitive. His next move was to attend the College of Lake County in Illinois, but he left there to move back to Wisconsin. “Life got in the way,” Chris said.
Next Chris enrolled in Gateway Technical College’s Computer Specialist – Network Administrator program because he liked the campus and the small class sizes.
“The technology they had was up-to-date with newer machines and the latest operating systems,” he explained. “Gateway counselors were accessible and the teachers were amazing.”
Gateway also had a reciprocal agreement with the College of Lake County so he was able to transfer those credits.
“With everything it took to get back to school again (now into my late 30’s), I was really driven for success,” Chris recalled. “That drive helped me to become valedictorian of my class with a 4.0 cumulative GPA. Academic success can come at any point in life!”
When he received his associate degree in 2003, it was the height of the .com crash and there were more network administrators than there were jobs. Chris continued working in the automotive industry. Then automotive sales dropped with the economy so Chris went looking for a high quality company to work for and found Standard Process, Inc., a dietary supplement producer.
Beginning with an entry-level position, Chris worked his way up and recently became an IT help desk technician—his dream job. He plans to return to Gateway to get some up-to-date certifications for his new job.
“Technical colleges offer easy access in and out to help you keep advancing in your career,” he said. “The training I received has benefited me in all of my work, and helped me to advance to where I am now.”