Ander Hernandez, 20, LaBelle.
“I was taking a four-year civil engineering program at a local university and loved it. I thought it would be great for me because I enjoy designing and the paperwork of engineering. I’ve been doing carpentry work on the side since high school and I was driving to campus one day and realized I was more concerned about these side projects than my schoolwork. I was looking at another three years of school and I realized carpentry was my true passion. I always liked constructing something and seeing the final results. I went online and found a 13-month carpentry and building construction technology program at Fort Myers Technical College. It was a big life decision to make the switch but my family was supportive. My father was my greatest inspiration. He always told us college was not for everyone. He instead received agricultural certifications from the University of Florida. He always told us we should love what we do. Working with my hands is best for me.”