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of the few allowed to document and write down information about the project, so he was writing down what he was learning but it did not seem like he was learning much from anyone else’s writings. In addition, current universities have specific class times and seasons specifically for learning; The Canal project seemed to only have time for limited “book” learning and it was only during the working season that workers like Jervis were able to pick the brains of the engineers on the project while working along side them. Assuming a modern John Jervis had worked and learned on a project of the similar size and societal weight as the Erie Canal, I don’t imagine there being much issue with him getting a job today. Especially with the words of his colleagues on such a project stating that he’s a quick study, he works incredibly hard, is respectful of his superiors, and works very well with others. This combination would make him a very valuable asset to any future projects regardless of his lack of a degree. I personally felt like Jervis when entering the field of Information Technology; I started out as an axeman; that is, providing over-the-phone tech support to residential customers on their internet servicer provider equipment, TV equipment issues, computer issues, etc. A few years and advances in my position later (still at the call center just providing business technical support in the form of helping set up point-of-sale systems on the internet, setting up security cameras/systems, static IP address assignment, etc.) Ifound an opportunity that, like Jervis, I was definitely underqualified for and didn’t quite grasp that factbut I was veryeager to learn and an IT manager gave me a chance because she saw potential in me. 18-months later, I’m now a full-time level II technician at Arizona State University studying IT in school
HST318 Spring 2016Bafter the fact. Jervis stories do still happen today, even in technical fields of engineering and technology.