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July 21, 2023

From the Coastguard to Classroom: A Veteran’s Remarkable Career Transition

Andrew smiles. The sky and a field are visible behind him.

After many years serving in the Coast Guard, Andrew Barresi ‘21 (Master’s of Education) went back to school to become a teacher.

“I thought teaching would be a good way to continue to serve - just in a different manner. I wanted to become a teacher because of the impact teachers had on me in my life and the hope that I could do the same for some of my students,” said Barresi. “It’s very satisfying to do a job that you know benefits your community.”

Baressi says, “I have been teaching 9th grade English at Ruben A. Cirillo High School in Gananda since February 2021, a month after graduating from Roberts.”

What was the most important trait he learned in the coast guard that helped him as a student? 

“Resilience. I was often put in stressful situations, such as late-night search and rescue cases in bad weather conditions on Lake Champlain or handling a flurry of media inquiries during high-profile search and rescue cases as a Public Affairs Specialist, but those experiences helped me realize my true capabilities.”

“One of the things I liked about Roberts was the culture of respect that was apparent starting with the first phone call I had during the admissions process and all the way through my final class and graduation. It truly felt like Roberts had a culture of respect,” said Barresi. 

“Roberts also made things easy in terms using my GI Bill benefits and the Yellow Ribbon Program – that made it financially possible to attend a non-state school.”

Roberts Wesleyan University has been part of the Military Friendly® School program since its inception and currently proudly holds the designation of “Military Friendly® School 2023-24 - Gold Designation School.”

Click here to explore how your unique veteran educational benefits can help you earn a degree at Roberts!


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