I went from making $9.50 an hour to almost $100K a year at UPS without having a college degree. I'm grateful that my 21 years at the company have paid off.

 I have worked at UPS for over two decades, starting as a warehouse worker in 2002 when I was just 18 years old. Back then, the job was physically demanding, and we relied on charts and memorization to load packages onto the right trucks. It was a tough balancing act between work and attending college, and things became even more challenging when I found out that my girlfriend, now wife, was pregnant.

Despite the difficulties, I managed to stay with UPS thanks to supportive managers and the assistance of my union. They helped me negotiate a more flexible work schedule and avoid getting fired. After three years of hard work, I was promoted to a delivery driver position, which came with a significant pay raise from $9.50 to $30 an hour.

As a delivery driver, I faced new challenges. Our job required physical labor and skilled driving, navigating big trucks, and delivering packages to businesses and residential areas. Initially, our trucks had manual transmissions, which caused knee injuries for some drivers. Fortunately, automatic transmissions were introduced soon after. I did injure my shoulder, but I received good medical care and still enjoy my job.

UPS has undergone some changes over the years, and the work atmosphere has shifted from a family-like environment to a more business-focused one. However, I still find fulfillment in my role, driving to different neighborhoods and building relationships with the community. UPS has provided me with great benefits, including health insurance, a 401(k), discounted stocks, and even discounts on vacations.

My union played a significant role in advocating for better contracts and ensuring our well-being. Despite not having a college degree, I can make around $100,000 a year, thanks to my years of dedication and seniority at UPS.

Looking ahead, I have about ten more years of physically demanding work before considering a transition to management or early retirement. I'm grateful for the opportunities UPS has provided me and for the support of my union. While being a workaholic has been both a blessing and a curse, I appreciate the lessons it has taught my family about hard work and dedication.

Please note that the UPS spokesperson's statement emphasizes the company's commitment to employee safety, work-life balance, and recognizing and celebrating excellence within the organization.  

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