Ricky Gunderson – mrWF Work Ethic Scholarship
Ricky Grunderson grew up in the quiet town of Kane, Pennsylvania. As a kid he loved being outdoors. It didn’t matter what Ricky was doing, if he was outside, he was happy. Things changed in the 4th grade. Ricky seemed to always have a cold or flu. He lost weight, became lethargic, and appeared jaundiced. Ricky missed a lot of school and his grades suffered. The doctors were stumped.
For three more years Ricky suffered until he was finally diagnosed properly – Addison’s disease.
Ricky’s immune system had been drastically depleted by this chronic disease. Within a week of getting the proper medication, Ricky’s health improved. Within a month his grades had improved exponentially. By the end of the school year, Ricky was on the Honor Roll.
“Once I was feeling better, the book stuff was easy. I never had to study.”
Ricky had been sick and inactive for so long that he had a new thirst for anything that required him to move, especially if it was outdoors. Ricky knew he wanted to do something in the trades, something hands on. The last thing he wanted was to wind up in an office behind a desk.
When Ricky was 12, his older brother, Kevin, became an Electrician. At that same time, Kane was losing a lot of its industry. Several of the big companies were leaving town while Kevin was becoming more and more successful; making good money and enjoying life in his spare time. Ricky took notice of this and decided that he too would become an electrician.
Through high school Ricky pursued academic and technical education, excelling at both. After graduating from Kane Area High School with honors, he enrolled at Triangle Tech Dubois to study electrical. The Financial Aid Department told Ricky about the mikeroweWORKS Work Ethic Scholarship Program.
“I researched it and was really inspired by the message of the creed.”
In February, Ricky graduated from Triangle Tech with an Associate’s Degree in Electrical Technology. He maintained a 4.0 GPA while doing it. Ricky accepted an offer to work as a Maintenance Electrician at a local packaging company.