My Story: Arnaldo Arista Mendoza

When Arnaldo started the Electrical Helper program at Goodwill Career and Technical Academy (GCTA), he knew little about the field. Not knowing what it would take to become a certified skilled trade worker, he knew there were many great job opportunities in this field, and he wanted to become an electrician. Despite not knowing where his efforts would lead him, Arnaldo worked hard and never gave up on his goal.

While at GCTA, Arnaldo was introduced to the necessary skills, professional safety techniques, and field-specific terminology to kickstart his career. Hands-on learning and the support of an enthusiastic class helped him develop a solid foundation and understanding of the role’s requirements. In no time, Arnaldo became familiar with the equipment required to perform electrician duties and felt confident pursuing this new career path.

Upon completion and Arnaldo’s graduation, Arnaldo received an apprentice at Schmidt Electrical Company,  where he could put his newly acquired skills and knowledge to work, demonstrating his passion and abilities to his supervisor and new team. The class at GCTA provided him with a strong foundation, and he has already recommended it to others interested in pursuing a career in electrical work.

“One of the critical factors that contributed to Arnaldo’s success was his instructor, Ted,” a dedicated teacher who cared about his students and constantly looked for ways to make the material more accessible and easily understood. Arnaldo felt inspired by Ted and was grateful for his guidance and support throughout the course.

Arnaldo’s story is a testament to the power of education and the value of hard work. With Arnaldo’s determination and the training provided by Goodwill Career and Technical Academy supported by Lowe’s, Arnaldo pursued his dream of becoming an electrician. As a Goodwill graduate, Arnaldo hopes to one day open his own business as an electrician and feels his time at Goodwill has taught him the foundations for a successful career in the skilled trades.

“I enjoyed my time at Goodwill. The instructor was great, and was everyone was extremely helpful. Overall it felt like a really positive atmosphere to learn in.” says Arnaldo.

This National Skilled Trade Day, we acknowledge Arnaldo’s journey and millions of others currently working in and pursuing a career in the skilled trades.