Berkeley Today Stories
From Veteran to Entrepreneur – Berkeley College Graduate Begins Next Chapter
Grovert Fuentes is a U.S. Air Force veteran using his experience in the service as a framework for the future. After graduating in May with a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing Communications, he’ll continue to apply the additional knowledge he gained while taking classes at Berkeley College in Midtown Manhattan to his entrepreneurial interests — both as a day trader in the futures market and as the founder of a fitness lifestyle business.
Transitioning Military Skills to School and Work
After retiring from the military, where he served in Iraq and Afghanistan, Mr. Fuentes decided that college was the next best option. “Returning to school can be difficult for veterans,” he said. “When I learned how veteran-friendly Berkeley College is, I had to do it.”
“I loved the flexible class schedule, and going to school at night worked best for me,” Mr. Fuentes said. “It was exactly what I needed to be able to learn different skills that enabled me to trade stocks, launch my business and still be a full-time college student.”
As a combat photographer in the Air Force, Mr. Fuentes gained practical experience in social media marketing. At Berkeley, his classes enhanced his knowledge of marketing strategies, managing budgets, and managing personnel.
“Berkeley College has allowed me to connect with professors who taught me some of the skills I use today,” Mr. Fuentes said.
Inspired by Wellness = Inspiring Fitness
While still trying to recover from injuries sustained overseas, the North Bergen, NJ, resident was inspired to help others with a business that would emphasize fitness. His one-year-old Fit Lifestyle Box is a monthly subscription service providing fitness-related products, supplement samples, healthy snacks, discounts and more.
“To me, success is my only option. I set goals and expectations so high that at times, I start to believe that they’re impossible,” he said. “But anything is possible if you have the drive. I will always keep on driving to reach my maximum potential.”
Crossing the stage and receiving his diploma at graduation on May 5, 2017, was an emotional achievement for Mr. Fuentes and his family. “My most memorable moment was seeing my mother’s excitement at graduation,” he said. “I’m the first college graduate in my family. All she ever wanted is to see me receive my diploma.”