Mandy Vucurovich is the winner of the 2011 Al Sandoval Memorial Scholarship. Her winning essay, below, addressed the topic: “Describe how life might be different for your family today if there had been no IBEW Local 1245.” Mandy is the daughter of 25-year member Matthew Vucurovich, a PG&E Lineman in San Francisco.
When my sister and I were little the moment we heard the screen screech in opening, we jumped out of our seats. Dad was home! We ran to greet him as he walked though the door, rejoicing his return. Back then he’d commute to San Francisco for work five days a week, but he always came home the same. Always carrying his work bag. taking off his ball cap. and everyday a long-sleeved shirt covered in stains. The most striking being that radiant orange contrasting with the black spots from work. Those stains told me that my dad worked hard everyday as a lineman and now I know it’s due to IBEW Local 1245 that he was given what he deserved.
If the IBEW had not been around I can honestly say I have no idea what my life would be like. My family probably wouldn’t still be living in the same house that I grew up in, without IBEW’s efforts for better wages. We wouldn’t have been able to see our family as much, since they live so far away. With IBEW my dad was able to take time off to spend time with our family. We could afford to take trips to see my Grandmas Peggy and Julie in Montana, or the rest in Alaska. Connecticut, and Germany. Without IBEW I’d hardly know a majority of my family, not to mention my life would be very different. We may not have stayed in Windsor and I wouldn’t have been given the opportunities that I’ve had. I’m not saying anywhere else I wouldn’t have done well, but the teachers I’ve had in Windsor make learning so much more fun and interesting. I feel like I’ve been thoroughly prepared for college and in my opinion IBEW has given me that.
Another thing I appreciate is the fact that IBEW has made so much emphasis on safety. Without its regulations on proper safety procedures and machinery my dad may not have been here today–or for that matter, a majority of my life. I may not have had the dad to play basketball with me, or the dad to celebrate the Giant’s 2010 World Series win with, or the dad in the bleachers cheering and yelling embarrassingly. Yes, my dad was that guy. But I loved that he was there all the same. I can’t even remember a time that he wasn’t at one of my games. And I can’t imagine a family road trip without dad driving.
How would my life be different without IBEW Local 1245? As far as fate versus free will goes, I believe some of the most important portions of my family’s life have been given to us due to the efforts and free will of IBEW. The brotherhood has given us our life and opportunities, our connection with the rest of our family, and made it so my dad can come through the door everyday Monday through Friday. And for that I am grateful.