UW certificate helps Melgoza launch her own business
Paulina Melgoza found UW-Madison at just the right time. Her former employer was struggling to find local commissioning providers, and she wanted to find training so she could do the job herself. Now, she runs her own business.
Melgoza, who works in Guadalajara, Mexico, received her commissioning certificate from UW-Madison Engineering Professional Development. Melgoza found UW-Madison after struggling to find good training locally. At the time, she was working as a LEED consultant, and when the external commissioner her company hired didn’t work out, she decided to get certified in commissioning. Then she started a business of her own.
“It’s definitely a challenge, but I like it because I am learning a lot,” she says. “I think the biggest challenge is that now I have to know a little bit of everything: management, taxes, computers, making contracts, recruiting people.”
However, it’s all worth it because she owns her time. “I still have to get the job done but I can organize my time the way it best suits me.”
Since completing the commissioning certificate at UW-Madison, she’s seen a change in her work.
“Now I am more motivated,” she says. “I am doing commissioning because I love the challenge.”
Melgoza said the instructors she had at UW-Madison were helpful because they facilitated discussion and sharing of experiences. Her peers talked about what they’re facing on the job, and she could relate to their situations.
“These are things you don’t find in Google,” she says.
Most courses take two to three days, but “should be longer,” according to Melgoza, because there’s so much information. She’s often overwhelmed at the end of each course because of everything she’s learned, but organizes her knowledge by creating checklists. Melgoza can also immediately apply course materials when she returns to work, and continues to reference them after.
Like many of the instructors at UW-Madison, Melgoza’s have all been in similar situations she faces while commissioning. In fact, that’s part of the draw. “The most important thing [about UW-Madison] is that the instructors have experience.”
She’ll continue coming to UW-Madison for courses as she progresses in her career.
“I really like it,” Melgoza said. “They’re focused on what I need.”
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February 12, 2018
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