Arik Pasche’s eyes were a wide as his smile. The Navy veteran couldn’t hide his excitement as he toured the Rocky Reach Dam powerhouse.
“Some of this equipment is familiar,” said the former jet aircraft mechanic. “But the sheer size of these things – it’s jaw-dropping.”
Pasche was one of three local veterans paired with PUD employees, also veterans, for a day of discovery about how their military skills can translate to civilian jobs including those at Chelan County PUD.
“This is a great opportunity,” Pasche said after climbing deep into the powerhouse with PUD apprentice hydro mechanics Denny Kruckenbert, a former Marine, and Justin Wilkinson, also a Navy vet.
“I didn’t even know this job existed, that there’s a chance to be part of something bigger than myself – to be part of a team doing such great work,” Pasche added.
This is the sixth year Chelan PUD and WorkSource, a statewide employment effort, have joined forces. The day-long program, always near Veterans Day, includes tips on resume writing and interview skills from PUD recruiter Ruth Erwert.
“We’ve found that veterans may not be aware that so many of the skills they develop during their service are ones we, and other employers, value” said Erwert. “It’s our responsibility to reach out to the community, including veterans, as we look to attract the best applicants.”
About 10 percent of Chelan PUD employees are veterans.
Safety & teamwork
Terri Garcia-Hernandez, local WorkSource manager, said veterans already understand that teamwork is vital and safety comes first. “It’s important for them to see what people do at the PUD and that there’s an opportunity to advance,” she said.
As his job shadow wrapped up, Pasche asked his tour guides for the single best tip they have for potential PUD job seekers. Learn all you can about the PUD and be ready to share your knowledge, said Kruckenberg.
“Be persistent,” added Wilkinson. “During that interview, they want to see that you really want it,”