Anthony Gaston finally decided he’d had enough of sales.
He landed in the construction industry because he desired a career that is “booming in Houston.” Gaston wanted to turn his job into a lifelong, growing career. Like many do, he walked onto the jobsite without training – and actually thought about quitting on his second day.
“I was on the tenth floor of a structure. It was the middle of January, and it was cold and rainy,” Gaston said. “It was an experience. It definitely taught me that anything can happen on the construction site, you just have to prepare for it.”
Why did he stay? Gaston saw there were greater opportunities for him. Rather than leaving the jobsite, he continued to walk back on. He decided to begin Instrumentation classes through CMEF at the recommendation of his supervisor, a one-year commitment that would spark a hectic schedule for the budding professional. From before sunrise to after dark, Gaston was either at work or in class.
“It wasn’t easy. I woke up early to get on the jobsite and then would go to classes at night. I took a couple of semesters off because I was on the job. But I finally completed my training this past December. It was definitely worth it,” Gaston said.
Despite the exhaustive manner Gaston described his life at this time, he plans on going back to school. He’s going to start a construction management course in the summer of 2015 with plans to seek a degree in petroleum engineering. He actually encourages his colleagues and peers to seek training as well.
“It’s not as expensive as most people think. The only hard part is the fear of not doing it. If you capture one percent, you’ve done more if you’ve just stayed stagnant. You’re going to have to make sacrifices if you do decide to come into this industry. It’s a wide open industry where you can become whatever you choose to become if you go through the right procedures as far as training. For me, I’m always positive. You just have to be willing to do it,” Gaston said.
Gaston proved himself willing and landed position after position that had not previously existed on their site, Materials Coordinator and then Logistics Coordinator. He said he saw there were missed opportunities that he could fill. But training gaps that mentors or colleagues can’t fill, Gaston said needs to be addressed by continuing education. That’s why, he added, CMEF is important for the industry.