Auto-Diesel graduates Alex Genao and Andrew Morrill are a minimum 12-hour drive from home. Genao and Morrill live about 90-minutes away from each other, Genao is from Gloucester, MA and Morrill is from Webster, New Hampshire. Both made the decision to attend OTC as a means to break free of their small town existence and experience more of what life had to offer. They are close to wrapping up 22-months away from home, with their Auto-Diesel and now BMW STEP training. They now have a better appreciation for a tight-knit community, and are very much looking forward to returning to it. They actually met as students at OTC. “Our OTC rep told us about the other, but we didn’t actually met until we were established students,” says Morrill. Genao started in July and Morrill started in August. Both agree, getting right into training after their high school graduations was the best plan for them. Genao quietly packed up and moved to Cleveland before most of his friends knew he was gone. “I like the fact OTC gets you in, gets you trained, and gets you out. I want to work, not waste my time on useless classes.” Both students also earned scholarships through their participation in Skills USA to attend OTC, but the bigger draw was the BMW STEP program. “There was a big push from high school administration to pursue a 4-year engineering degree, but that’s not what I wanted,” says Morrill. Genao nods his head in agreement. “Yeah, I wanted to work on cars not design them. I wanted more. I wanted BMW and OTC was the logical choice for me.” Most of our out-of-state students have a bigger emotional commitment and financial investment in attending OTC. “I can’t just quit and drive 20 minutes to get home,” says Genao. “I didn’t give myself an option to quit,” says Morrill. “I came here with a clear goal and a plan to reach my goal. Quitting or going home without achieving that, wasn’t even a choice.” Both students credit their parents in setting the example for a strong work-ethic, and also with their support of their sons being so far from home. Genao and Morrill enjoy the training dynamic and personal chemistry within the BMW STEP training program. “Every one here is working towards the same goal and are motivated to be successful.” Genao has already secured a tech position at BMW of Peabody, MA and Morrill is still in talks with a BMW dealership in Nashua, NH. Their advice to young people considering their options after high school, is to not be afraid to leave home and explore beyond your comfort zone.