Lorain County JVS Commercial Truck Technology instructor, Matthew Harding, is also known as MKC Harding in the US Coast Guard. Chief Machinery Technician Petty Officer Harding is living out his life’s dream when he started his teaching career at LCJVS this year.
With that dream though, comes a cost. “I knew that the cost for me to go to school to obtain my teaching license would be expensive, so I applied for the 2022 Coast Guard Foundation Enlisted Reserve Scholarship and was one of eight people selected for this scholarship out of the entire country. That is very humbling, but I am also proud of it.”
“I have been getting a lot of recognition for this scholarship and getting emails from people in the Coast Guard telling me congratulations and great job.”
Harding's love for career tech started when he graduated from a career-technical school. He shared that he knew even then that teaching in a career tech room was what he wanted to do. “I know that if you want to teach career tech, you need to work in the field, so I started out as a school bus mechanic, and at the same time, I enlisted in the Coast Guard and went to their technical school.”
“After a few years, I realized that I wanted to do more with engines and the only way for me to learn is to do it. I am a hands-on learner. I eventually found my way to the Cleveland Metro Parks where I repaired everything from trucks, to inspected ferry vessels, and all the way up to heavy equipment.”
Now Harding is working in what he says is his dream civilian career and says being entrusted with two classrooms of students is his greatest accomplishment.
“I am happy to be in a classroom, and after working hard for fifteen years, to have gotten where I always dreamed of being is great. The year is going well. I am learning every day, as well as the students are.”
“I think my story is exciting and having the Coast Guard support my new career as the Lorain County JVS Commercial Truck Technology instructor with this scholarship is meaningful to me.”