As a recent college graduate the past couple of months have been chock-full of enough cover letters, resumes and interviews to make my head spin. I applied to a diverse collection of industries—from healthcare to manufacturing, but manufacturing is where I found my golden ticket.


In the weeks leading up to my start date at Uponor, I had people ask me the question seniors have learned to loathe: “What are your plans after graduation?” Luckily, the question is not so taboo when you actually have an answer. Immediately after explaining to well-intentioned people that I am working for a piping manufacturer, their responses tended to include concerned looks and sympathetic words, and all I could do at the time was shrug my shoulders. It is no secret that most people—myself included—do not inherently associate piping with an off-the-charts coolness factor, but after my first week at Uponor I can honestly say I am impressed with the technology behind our walls and flooring.


These plastic PEX pipes are incredible pieces of innovation. As I am quickly learning, PEX is both bafflingly simple, yet calculatingly complex. It is flexible, but strong; it is safe, but cost effective. The point is, college grads, do not judge an industry too quickly. All industries can be fascinating when you take a closer look. Sure, I do not have an unwavering passion for plumbing, but I do have a passion for connecting with people and helping them lead comfortable and safe lives. At the end of the day I am able to connect, build and inspire through my work at Uponor and because of that, pipes are, well, cool.


Figure out what you are interested in and be sure to ask the right questions to ensure that you are not only a great fit for a company, but they are a great fit for you. Uncover the innovation and glamour in the industries you are applying to—do not be afraid to be a part of the companies you may have initially overlooked. If I had disregarded the manufacturing industry, I would have seriously missed out.