Robby Totten – Past Work Ethic Scholarship Winner is on his way to being Mr. Fix It
If anyone fits the old adage, “If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life,” it’s Robby Totten. As far back as he can remember, Robby knew he wanted to be a heavy equipment operator. It makes sense when you consider his dad worked as one for the town of Dunning, NY and always brought his work home. Robby and his younger brother would play with Tonka trucks in their sandbox while their dad would move earth in his dozer.
Thanks to his dad’s tutelage, by age 8, Robby knew how to operate several pieces of heavy equipment. At 14, Robby started working for friends of the family at Sheeley Oil & Excavating Inc. He did a little bit of everything – from replacing driveways and septic tanks to digging ditches. When he was a senior, he became an Advanced Regents Student, which allowed him to go to school in the morning and work in the afternoon. “I knew I needed to earn money for college, and, at the same time, it gave me the experience I needed to further my education.”
It was while working at Sheeley that Robby had an epiphany. He had always known that he wanted to be a heavy equipment operator, but after one grueling day spent repairing a sceptic system, Robby realized that he needed to learn how to fix things. “Being a technician became a goal when I realized everything breaks. If you’re an operator and don’t know how to fix it, everything stops.” He wanted to know both ends of the equation by being able to operate and repair machinery
Robby set his sights on a certificate in Heavy Equipment, Truck and Diesel Technology. He picked a school and scoured the internet looking for scholarships. He applied for 60 and received 8, including a mikeroweWORKS Work Ethic Scholarship.
Today, Robby is in his second year at Alfred State College and working as a paid intern at H.O. Penn Machinery Company-CAT Equipment Dealer. He plans to graduate in May of 2017, after which, he hopes to continue his work at HO Penn as a Field Technician. “The fun is troubleshooting – finding the problem and fixing it.” Did he say “fun”? That doesn’t sound like work to me.
Robby figured out how to #GetSkilledWithMRW and loves what he does.