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Sgt. Richard “Scotty” Barbara: Seizing life’s opportunities

Sgt. Richard “Scotty” Barbara: Seizing life’s opportunities

Sgt. Richard “Scotty” Barbara: Seizing life’s opportunities
By Annette P. Gomes, Warrior Care and Transition

ARLINGTON, Va. – U.S. Army Sgt. Richard “Scotty” Barbara says growing up in Louisiana with a family Army legacy, helped prepare him for the future and new beginnings by learning to always have a strategy and a back-up plan for life’s curve balls. Barbara suffered a torn labrum in his right shoulder, and a multitude of other injuries, while stationed in Kuwait. He was sent to the Warrior Transition Battalion, Fort Hood, Texas to recover, a place he says set him up for success.

“Initially, coming to the WTB, I found a flyer in the Soldier Family Assistance Center with an application link to an oil company, however, I missed the initial offering by a few weeks,” Barbara said. “I waited until this past October and was contacted for a supervisory training program in the fracking field. Fracking is considered one of the most popular ways to find oil, coal and natural gases in the United States. The financial aspect was attractive and the management skills I learned in the Army were extremely helpful,” he added.

Barbara is about to embark into the fracking field, which he describes as “a gift with endless opportunities,” with one of the world’s largest leading oil field service companies.

“This is an awesome opportunity. While I was at [the Warrior Transition Battalion, Fort Hood, Texas], I had free time and there were tons of resources that you can use to find a new beginning,” Barbara said.

The wheeled vehicle mechanic also used the opportunity to attend the Troops into Transportation Program that provides Soldiers with the opportunity to obtain a commercial driving license.

“I got into the Troops into Transportation Program as a backup for the oilfield. I wanted to have a job in case the oilfield didn’t work out. Troops into Transportation falls into the Continuing Education Readiness Program. Before even starting the class, I had pre-hire offers from multiple carriers all over the country. Some even offered huge driving bonuses,” said Barbara.

Luckily for Barbara, his position in the oil industry is secure. He will begin his position as a fracking supervisor in late January through the Field Operations Professional Program, which combines on the job training with classroom time. This allows him to move forward in an effort to become a supervisor in training and ultimately a full time supervisor running his own shift.

“I stayed in contact with [their] military recruiter while I was at the WTB and when the position came open, I was selected for it,” Barbara said. “[Soldiers should know that] during your time at the WTB, it’s up to you to make the best out of it. Finding a job wasn’t hard, the amount of resources available are limitless. The opportunity for a successful transition is here, you only need to seize it.”

After five years of military service, Barbara will retire in the summer of 2019.

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