Name: Kelvin Smith
Job Title: Electrician Helper
Education: Associate’s Degree
Favorite Subject(s) in School: History, English
First Real Job: Cashier at KFC
Dream Job: Professional Musician
Interests: Playing Keyboard/Drums/Guitar, Spending time with Family
Kelvin Smith is originally from New York. He paid a visit to South Carolina because of a family occasion. During that trip, he realized that it was far easier for him and his wife to find a job in South Carolina than in New York. He decided to move his young family to the South. Kelvin signed up for the apprenticeship program at South Carolina Ports Authority. The fact that this program pays for him to study at Trident Technical College and earn an associate degree is the selling point to him and his family. As Kelvin works on his degree, he is considered a full-time employee at SC Ports authority, receiving a full-time salary with full benefits. Kelvin believes that taking this path allows him to have a more focused goal, which is to become an industrial electrician, and earning the associate degree will open doors to more opportunities and give him confidence.
Kelvin encourages young people to explore the fields of craftsmen because the job opportunities are abundant. He currently works alongside other certified electricians to maintain the container cranes. He takes great pride in working at the SC Ports Authority and contributing to the economic development of the state.
Kelvin and his wife have three kids now after moving south. He enjoys his life in South Carolina and is motivated to maximize his potential in his newly adopted home state.
Tell us about your job. How would you describe your job to a student?
We maintain container cranes. We’re constantly problem solving to fix current problems and prevent futures problems.
What advice do you have for students interested in your job?
Go to school and earn the certificate or degree that’ll open the doors to the opportunities you’re looking for. I’d also encourage everyone to target a few companies they wouldn’t mind working for.
What subjects in school will students need to do your job?
You’ll need math and science for sure.
What do I like most about my job?
I like the problem solving aspect and how rewarded I feel knowing I was apart of such a important operation.
What is the biggest challenge in my job?
There’s a new challenge everyday. So I think making sure that I’m getting the proper rest the night before and eating the right things during the day so I can meet the daily challenges consistently are probably the biggest challenges that come with my job.
What do students need to do to get a job like yours?
Students need to be serious about earning their degree or certificate, and retaining as much as they can while in the classroom. Students should also seek apprenticeship opportunities so they can apply the book knowledge to practical scenarios consistently.