Young and Old - A Tale of Two Graduates

Nearly five decades separate the oldest and youngest graduates of ACTC class of 2014, but they share a desire for the education that can help them find the work they want for the future.

William D. Sielaff , a 66 year old from Grayson,  is looking for a second career, and John Michael Rogers,  a 19 year old from Catlettsburg, is working on his first career. Both earned an Associate in Applied Science (AAS) Degree with high distinction.

Sielaff retired from the Army after 30 years of service and decided he was too young to retire. “I’m getting older but I don’t want to be old,” he said.  A helicopter pilot for most of his Army career, he had also served as a safety officer. Although he had a Bachelor’s degree in economics from 1975, he wanted to pursue a field that had always interested him – electricity.

“I looked around the area and found that ACTC had a program I wanted, so I found good use for my GI Bill benefits,” he said.  “I really enjoyed the Army, but I’m glad to be able to spend more time with my wife, Linda Arnett, an area artist.  I’m also looking forward to working as an electrician, an independent contract or maybe a sales representative for an electrical supply company.”

He earned an AAS in Electrical Technology. “Being back in a college environment after many years was something of a challenge, but  the instruction was very good,” he said. “Now I’m looking forward to the rest of my life.”

Rogers took dual credit classes drafting through three years at Boyd County High School.   “I became intrigued with drafting in my freshman year and decided to take as many dual credit classes as I could,” he said.   “Dual credit seemed like a good deal because you get high school and college classes out of the way at the same time. I had about six classes already completed by the time I graduated from BCHS in 2012.”

He earned an AAS in Computer Drafting and Design. “I had originally planned on getting a diploma, but one of my instructors showed me how I could take a few more general education courses and get a degree.  So that’s what I did.  Now I feel better prepared to get a job.” He would like to find a job locally as his first step in building a career.