Friday, December 14, 2018

Graduate Profile: Bobby Wilson

Student veteran and fall graduate Bobby Wilson has experienced lots of change in his life. Now, he’s embracing change by embarking on a new career path. Bobby spent five years in the Air Force as a structural mechanic; he then continued in the aviation industry for a total of 21 years. After multiple layoffs in his field, he felt that job security was non-existent. Bobby pondered going back to school for a while and decided to go for it. With some past experience in aviation law, a second career in law seemed like a natural fit. He also discovered a grant which would pay for his first two years called the Trade Readjustment Act. He chose to take his first steps towards his law career at Vol State.

“People who qualify for this are those whose jobs have been relocated out of the country. I found out by accident about it, just by digging around,” he said. Discovering this sealed the deal to attend college.

“I thought, ‘I’ve done been in this business so long, I figured, ya know, maybe I just need to get out of it while I’ve still got time.’ Even if I became physically disabled I could continue to work. So, if what little bit of brain I have continues to work, I can still make a living.”

Bobby will attend Tennessee State University’s Criminal Justice program conducted on Vol State’s campus; his end goal is to attend law school.

“It was the quickest most expeditious route to get to law school,” he said. “I thrive in the (law) environment and reading the nuances of the law.” Bobby aims to eventually pursue administrative law.

Bobby has expressed his positive experience at Vol State: “I have really liked Vol State. I was apprehensive as you could imagine, coming back into this environment … I thought, ‘How will these young people look at me?’ But it’s been a pleasant experience. I’ve made some really good acquaintances. I would highly recommend Vol State.”

Bobby is excited about his transition to TSU and plans to return to work in January while attending school full-time next semester. Bobby is a husband and father to four; he is one of 24 veterans graduating this Saturday.

-By Rachel Keyes

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