As we look forward to the 10th anniversary of the V.E.T.S.TM Program, Sharp Decisions is highlighting some of the first graduates that led the way in bringing the program to where it is today. In this Veteran Spotlight, allow us to introduce Miguel Diaz, who served in the Navy from 1998 to 2002. Miguel is now Lead Test Engineer at a major financial institution.
Let’s learn more about Miguel…
Miguel Diaz enlisted in the United States Navy when he was 19 years old in 1998 and served until 2002. He said, “It was an amazing experience. I traveled the world, 13 countries, lived in three different states, and I got to meet different people of different cultures.” In 2002, Miguel found a Navy contractor job in California, but soon realized he was homesick for the East Coast. He attended mechanical school and worked in mechanical positions until about 2013.
After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in 2012, Miguel worked a retail job to make ends meet while looking for his next professional opportunity. It is at this time that Sharp Decisions contacted Miguel with the opportunity to join the V.E.T.S.TM Program in 2013.
Before joining, Miguel was unsure about the opportunity having had no office experience. He thought at first, “I don’t see myself in an office. I don’t see myself working with computers because programming seems like it’s way out there. Another planet, another language.” Soon he would find out with training from the V.E.T.S.TM Program that he would not only enjoy working in this capacity, but also excel at it.
It’s a very good opportunity that [Sharp Decisions] gave to all of us. I’ve been able to succeed not just financially, but also educate myself a lot more because of the exposure from the V.E.T.S.TM Program.Miguel Diaz
During the V.E.T.S.TM Program training, Miguel and his veteran classmates learned about quality assurance, risk management, analysis, and various software and platforms used for testing. The training allowed this group of veterans to work on their first contract through the V.E.T.S.TM Program with a financial company in the Midwest. Miguel worked remotely testing their Graphic User Interface (GUI) as well as the GUI translation – being bilingual, this helped Miguel pick up this additional opportunity.
Following the initial contract of the V.E.T.S.TM Program, Miguel and the other veterans worked with a health insurance agency before heading to an investment banking company for their next contracts. At the investment banking company, Miguel was a resource manager assisting the quality assurance manager with employees and contractors that operated worldwide.
Miguel had found many opportunities through the V.E.T.S.TM Program and even assisted Sharp Decisions with internal projects in between contracts. Finally in 2017, Miguel began working at a major financial institution where he is currently employed as lead test engineer.
On his time in the V.E.T.S.TM Program, Miguel said the comradery that came with working with other veterans was essential to their success in civilian job opportunities. Knowing that these same veterans would have had his back in the military, he said he felt comfortable knowing they’d have his back in a corporate environment.
Miguel was a Petty Officer Engineman 2nd Class in the United States Navy. Follow Sharp Decisions on LinkedIn and Twitter for more updates. For Job postings, see our Careers Page. Head here to learn more about the V.E.T.S.TM Program.