BVT senior Natalie Bolduc’s career plan takes a ‘wild’ ride
Natalie Bolduc of Bellingham, a senior in the Painting & Design Technology program at BVT, is pictured applying a Mission 22 vinyl graphic to a McLaren.
ON – To get where you want to be, sometimes you have to stay motivated and keep trying. As the saying goes, if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. That is how Natalie Bolduc of Bellingham, a senior in the Painting & Design Technology (P&D) program at Blackstone Valley Tech, chose to pursue her vocational-technical education with perseverance, determination, and a sense of adventure.
Natalie started as a sophomore, not having a traditional exploratory experience. She was given a choice between Electrical and P&D. She said, “I decided that P&D would suit my interests better, given that I’ve always been creative and love painting and art, so I went with that. It was a decision that has led me to have some incredibly memorable experiences.”
Several local car enthusiasts entrust BVT’s P&D shop to produce and apply graphics and wraps to their luxury vehicles, which is an incredible learning opportunity. It is something that Natalie never thought she’d be doing, but she has become rather skilled at it.
“I’m so grateful to my P&D instructor, Tom Lamont, for inviting me to apply Mission 22 vinyl graphics to a McLaren at the Dream Ride car show,” said Natalie. “If you told me a year ago that I would be doing that, I would’ve said you were crazy. I was a little nervous being around such expensive cars, let alone applying decals to them, but it was an amazing experience.”
Natalie is maximizing her trade experience through BVT’s cooperative education program (co-op). She applied, interviewed, and secured a co-op with Cadwell Sign in Holliston. “I’m enjoying it. Honestly, it feels a lot like being in our shop,” said Natalie. “Our instructors taught us to treat our shop like a real workplace, but it’s hard to realize what that means until you’re in one. Cadwell has similar machines to those in our shop. I’ve used their Suma cutter and a laminate machine since I already know how to use them. I’m happy that I’ve traveled down this path. I’m confident in my trade knowledge and comfortable in the workforce.”
“My post BVT plans are quite different from what I am doing now,” said Natalie. “I have another adventure in mind, exploring Zoology or Wildlife Ecology at a four-year college, and I’ll see where it goes from there. Wherever I go, I go prepared. BVT has provided me with skills and experiences that will serve me well in any career.”
“What amazes me most about our students is their growth and transformation. On their journey together as a class, each one of them is uniquely different. Even though I’ve been in the industry for so long, they still surprise me with their choices,” said Lamont. “That’s what’s cool. We train them, give them knowledge and tools to succeed, and then we let them go.