Meet real role models working in various industries who have found success through alternative pathways after high school — and what they like about what they do!

  • Lane Religa, Video Production Assistant

    Lane Religa

    Video Production Assistant and Drone Pilot

    I have always been interested in architecture and was fascinated with stadiums as a kid, traveling to see them all over the world. When I got my first drone I began to photograph them, then quickly discovered that I enjoyed shooting video footage most of all. My family went to a lot of games at...

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  • Will Henry, Manager and Goldsmith

    Will Henry

    Manager and Goldsmith

    I was never one of those kids who knew exactly what they wanted to be when they grew up. I remember wanting to be a police officer when I was very little, then a musician, then a psychologist, then a teacher, then a musician again … I’ve always had too many interests to stick with just one plan.

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  • Andrea DeJesus, Owner of A&H Farm

    Andrea DeJesus

    Owner, A&H Farm

    "Growing up on the farm, it was hard not to resent the missed sleepovers, sports teams and free time that other kids my age were able to enjoy. Farming was hard work, and I couldn’t see myself turning it into a career.

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  • Jessica Good

    Jessica Good

    Customer Account Manager

    Jessica Good grew up seeing family members work in the aviation industry, but she had no idea how many opportunities the field presented. Today, she's working in a job she never knew existed until she started at Textron Aviation.

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  • Josh Huston

    Josh Huston

    Manager, Tool Engineering

    Josh Huston earned his GED, attended a technical school to continue his education, then went on to earn a mechanical engineering degree. Today, he's been working at Textron Aviation for more than 14 years. 

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  • Chance Jacobson

    Chance Jacobson

    Wind Turbine Technician 2

    I became interested in wind energy during my junior year of high school when several things happened at once. First, I realized there wasn’t room to join my dad and grandpa in our family farming operation like I’d hoped. We were considering my options when we heard about wind energy from a...

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  • Crystal Grimmett

    Aircraft Structure Mechanic

    On the noisy production floor, Crystal Grimmett paved her way to success. As a sheet metal mechanic for the legendary Citation Latitude, Grimmett shares some of the challenges she has overcome as a female in aviation in the video below.  

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  • Channing Dionisopoulos

    IT Manager

    Channing Dionisopoulos’ career took flight in information technology at Textron Aviation and shortly after, she also became a pilot. Now, as a leader, Dionisopoulos encourages other women in aviation to fearlessly charge forward in their careers.

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  • Pili Barker

    Manager, Special Missions Bids and Proposal

    Pili Barker shares her journey of empowerment, from the strength displayed by her mother, to being empowered to succeed herself, to now being an inclusive leader for female voices on her own team.

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  • Tracy Leopold

    Vice President of North America Customer Service Centers

    Tracy Leopold knew she wanted to work in aviation since she attended airshows with her family as a child. Since starting at Cessna over 20 years ago, Tracy has served customers in every aspect and phase of their buying and ownership journey—from aircraft deliveries to Global Parts Sales. Today,...

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