About a month after high school graduation, Gerry headed down to the local technical school to see about enrolling in one of their trades-based programs of study.
His first inclination was to sign up for the HVAC program, but he discovered that the program did not accept every applicant.
The admissions representative let Gerry know that the HVAC program was exclusive and demanded references. Since he didn’t have a clue whom to ask about getting a reference, Gerry was nervous about applying for the HVAC program and felt that he might not get in. The application allowed him to choose two different areas of study, a first choice and a second choice, so he decided to just go for it and put HVAC in the number one spot and electrician in the number two spot. The admissions rep explained that someone from each department – both HVAC and electrician – would be in touch with him soon to give him guidance on their specific programs. The more Gerry thought about it, the more he knew he wanted to get into the more challenging HVAC studies, so he reached out to his old high school English teacher. She was the one who had first introduced him to the concept of learning a trade such as HVAC, so he figured she might have some thoughts on the matter. His teacher was glad to see him come back to the classroom, and she suggested that if he really wanted the HVAC program, he should let the school know that he was passionate about heating and cooling the world and would not be taking any other courses. Then, she wrote him a recommendation letter and addressed it to the HVAC program chair. She also told Gerry to find two other teachers to write recommendations and also get his supervisor at McDonald’s to write one. That is how Gerry finally decided to apply only for the HVAC course of study.