ATI Welding Student Wins Mike Rowe Works Foundation Scholarship

When Collin Chizmar graduated from high school, he knew one thing for sure. “I was acutely aware that I could never work in an office,” he says. “There was no way I could sit behind a desk for eight to ten hours a day.” After graduation, he decided that he would move to Virginia Beach, Virginia to attend Advanced Technology Institute (ATI) and study welding. He chose to wait until January to begin so he could save a little money first. He got a job at UPS where he would often work 12-hours shifts.

Collin is a hard worker and has a lot of initiative. Those are just some of the reasons why he was among the students awarded a Work Ethic Scholarship from the Mike Rowe Works Foundation. Collin is one of more than 300 students nationwide, and the only recipient from Coastal Virginia, to receive this $5,500 scholarship.

As stated on the Foundation’s website, “The Work Ethic Scholarship Program is about recognizing the people who understand the importance of personal responsibility, delayed gratification, a positive attitude, and, of course, work ethic. The hardworking men and women who keep the lights on, water running, and air flowing—the next generation of skilled workers who will work smart and hard. These are the folks we consider rock stars, and we want to reward them.”

Collin says he was shocked that he had won the scholarship, but the instructors and staff at ATI say that it came as no surprise at all. “Colin is so deserving of this because of his commitment to being part of the solution of filling the skills gap in this country,” says ATI Campus Director of Admissions Mike Ambrose. “He is very intelligent and could have gone the traditional college route, however he saw the need for skilled welders and knew he didn’t have to spend four to six years in college and graduate with a lot of debt, to get a good career. He is a polite, hardworking, and a caring young man.”

When talking with Collin, it becomes quickly evident that he is not only committed to becoming a welder, but also has a very real passion for the profession. “When I am welding, my whole world is reduced to a three by two-inch space,” he says. “I am completely focused on what I am doing. I am holding what amounts to a miniature thunderstorm in my hands and I am fascinated by how I can control it to get a job done. Most people don’t even think about welders and how important they are to our world. You finish the job and it’s covered by paint. There are so few people who will ever see our work, but I can weld the steel for a building and know that it will stand for at least 100 years, and I had a part in that. I can take pride in that. Upon graduation, Collin has big plans. “I know I will be well prepared,” he says. “The instructors at ATI are so good. You won’t find better ones anywhere. There are so many things I will be able to do. I can work on oil rigs, pipelines, mines, and ships. I can travel the world if like, which I will probably do. My skills will always be in demand.”

The Advantages of Accelerated Learning Programs

Accelerated learning programs are designed to quickly give you the skills and information you need for the job you want. There are a number of important advantages to these programs.

  • Get ahead of the pack. While your competition is struggling through 4-year programs, you can be ready to start earning paychecks in just a few short months.
  • Get what you need and nothing else. Instead of wasting time discussing philosophical points that don’t really apply to your daily job, your accelerated learning program focuses on the most important information you need to get the job done.

Are You Ready to Get Started Today?

The Associate in Occupational Science degree in Heavy Vehicle Technology with Service Management from ATI is the ideal way to start your heavy construction vehicle career. You should learn all the technical skills needed to repair and maintain big machines. Also, the customer service skills you learn in this program could make you a valuable team member in repair shops and construction garages all over the world.

Contact the friendly admissions counselors at ATI to get started on your road to career success today.

Diesel/Heavy Vehicle Training