Unlocking Success: ACC Student’s Journey to Towering Achievements

ACC Continuing Education  alumnus Rafael Lopez poses for a portrait on Thursday, July 20, 2023, outside the Moody Center. Lopez earned a professional certification for designing 3D electrical systems by taking CE courses at ACC and is employed by one of the companies that were contracted to build the Moody Center.

“I am thankful that ACC has always been there as an option for anyone looking for something better out of their careers. It truly saved my life, and after completing my courses, I only wish I did it sooner!” – Rafael Lopez 

The path to reaching new heights in your career isn’t always straightforward. For Austin Community College District (ACC) student Rafael Lopez, it took some building blocks to reach new heights.

“Since graduating, I’ve been able to obtain full-time work in 3D electrical design and have completed design projects for construction efforts all around the country. Locally, I’ve been able to take part in the design and construction of multiple skyscrapers.” 

Rafael spent decades working as an electrician. At the time, he thought there were no next steps to advance his career.

“I drove by ACC all the time, for decades. I always told myself I would never be smart enough or good enough to return to college or ACC. I was wrong. ACC’s solid reputation made me feel safe taking a chance in unfamiliar territory.”

When he was ready for his next steps in life, he decided to enroll in some courses at ACC.

“Somebody told me about courses at ACC and I didn’t know the college offered. Once I discovered they did, I thought, ‘I can do this.’ I completed classes in solar panel installation, AutoCAD, and Revit 3D design, which included a variety of technical and design challenges in the assignments. The classes were directly relevant to my career aspirations.”

Completing those courses helped Rafael move into a new and exciting career. He was on the team with Page Southerland Page, Inc. (Page) –– an international multidisciplinary design, engineering, and interior firm. 

“I was able to help design and be onsite for high-profile Austin projects, including the Fairmont Austin, The Independent, the Moody Center, and government facilities.”

Rafael shares a message with anyone who is afraid to take those next steps:

“Whoever thinks they can’t, you can. You should try because the first step will lead to the second step, and so on and so on. I received so much individual attention in my classes. Each professor made it feel like the student’s success was also important to them.”

Click here to learn more about ACC Revit classes.

ACC also offers credit programs in The Architectural and Engineering Computer Aided Design program (A&E CAD). The program provides training in the fields of technical graphics and computer-aided design. For more information, visit austincc.edu/cad.

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