Ben Rixstine

February 7, 2022

ICC Class of 2021 (Welding Technology, Diesel Power Equipment Technology)

Marine Machinery Mechanic at Army Corps of Engineers

Tell us about the career path that led you to your current job.

I was an intern with the Corps, as a freshman DPET student, they welcomed me very professionally, tested my abilities, and found my skills acquired at college to exceed their expectations. Over the next couple of months on an internship, they offered me a job contingent upon graduation. I readily accepted the offer and reported to work immediately after graduation.

How did ICC shape your future or help you attain your professional goals?

ICC equipped me with the soft skills required to make it through a stressful interview process successfully, as well as teaching me exceptional professionalism allowing me to excel in any employment situation. ICC also did a fabulous job teaching me two highly technical and desperately needed trades in the workforce today, giving me the opportunity to work anywhere in the world, next door to Mom and Dad, or the other side of the globe.

What advice would you give current students at ICC to succeed?

Today in the COVID crisis, I would encourage students to attend as many in person classes as possible, especially if pursuing a technical degree. As a student who got to experience both virtual and in person classes, I remember much more from the classes taught in the classrooms and the labs. Students also should take assignments seriously. Many times, in high school I would have a teacher tell me this would be on a test to remember it, but no further. In college it’s a little different, because what you’re learning is specific to your skills which means it’s not information that’s just going to be on a test but it’s knowledge that you will be expected to know in the real world upon employment.

I always encourage students who are undecided in their major to take a tour of the AIT (Agricultural & Industrial Technologies) building and try out some of the trade classes. Industry is pleading for more educated and qualified electricians, welders, mechanics, truck drivers, machinists, boilermakers, craftsmen, equipment operators, HVAC technicians, and so many more skilled employees! The world is a big and growing place, and it takes people who understand how to build a better world physically to make that happen. I encourage all students looking into ICC to be a part of this better world and give the Industrial Technology department a try to see if it’s the right place for them. It was for me!