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SOLAR MOUNTING SPECIALIST: Happiness Is Feeling Like You Have Purpose

About this video 

Ben, a solar mounting specialist for S:FLEX, is responsible for designing ground mount structures for large solar arrays. He changed careers several times before deciding to return to school. He discovered working with 3D design programs through a professor who is now one of his colleagues. Ben tells us that getting to design on a computer is somewhat like playing a video game all day, so the job is quite fun for him.

Job Title: Solar Mounting Specialist
Employer: S:FLEX

Job Summary: Commercial and Industrial Designers

Job Description

Industrial designers develop the concepts for manufactured products, such as cars, home appliances, and toys. They combine art, business, and engineering to make products that people use every day.

On-the-Job Training

None

Additional Info

An increasing number of designers are also getting a Master of Business Administration (MBA) to gain business skills.

Quick Facts

Average salary
Average salary
National Statistic Change Location
Confirm
$35,000 - $95,000
Projected job growth
Projected Job Growth
5 to 15 percent
Typical schedule
Typical schedule
Full-time
Typical workplace
Typical workplace
Office, Indoor
Personal qualities
Personal Qualities
Detail oriented, Problem solving skills, Creativity, Technical skills, People skills

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P3.instances[0].transcript.parse_transcript_data({"transcript":"<p><span m='740'>My</span> <span m='820'>name's</span> <span m='1030'>Ben.</span> <span m='1610'>I</span> <span m='1980'>work</span> <span m='2360'>for</span> <span m='2740'>a</span> <span m='3120'>solar</span> <span m='3290'>mounting</span> <span m='3670'>company</span> <span m='4080'>called</span> <span m='4330'>S:FLEX</span> <span m='4880'>in</span> <span m='5240'>Denver,</span> <span m='5630'>Colorado.</span> <span m='7120'>And</span> <span m='7870'>a</span> <span m='7970'>typical</span> <span m='8340'>day</span> <span m='8510'>for</span> <span m='8670'>me</span> <span m='9200'>is</span> <span m='11000'>showing</span> <span m='11240'>up to</span> <span m='11440'>work--</span> <span m='11700'>we</span> <span m='11980'>provide</span> <span m='12335'>the</span> <span m='12690'>sub-structures</span> <span m='13810'>for</span> <span m='14480'>large</span> <span m='14850'>solar</span> <span m='15310'>arrays.</span> <span m='15770'>So there's</span> <span m='16090'>the</span> <span m='16445'>solar</span> <span m='16800'>panels,</span> <span m='17830'>there's</span> <span m='18140'>inverters,</span> <span m='19110'>and</span> <span m='19540'>then</span> <span m='19690'>there's</span> <span m='19940'>the</span> <span m='20010'>sub-structures</span> <span m='20750'>that</span> <span m='20860'>hold</span> <span m='21150'>everything</span> <span m='21540'>up.</span> <span m='21840'>And</span> <span m='23880'>that's</span> <span m='24040'>what</span> <span m='24150'>we</span> <span m='24260'>do.</span> </p><p><span m='24760'>So</span> <span m='25360'>people</span> <span m='25710'>will</span> <span m='26280'>call us</span> <span m='26750'>or</span> <span m='26910'>email</span> <span m='27820'>or</span> <span m='28070'>fax</span> <span m='29580'>information</span> <span m='30200'>requests</span> <span m='30770'>or</span> <span m='31210'>quote</span> <span m='31460'>requests.</span> <span m='32189'>And</span> <span m='32710'>I</span> <span m='32750'>will</span> <span m='32980'>take</span> <span m='33250'>one</span> <span m='33390'>of</span> <span m='33450'>those,</span> <span m='33860'>and</span> <span m='34300'>we</span> <span m='34410'>have</span> <span m='35020'>different</span> <span m='35300'>engineering</span> <span m='35730'>programs</span> <span m='36320'>that</span> <span m='36420'>help</span> <span m='36670'>us</span> <span m='36850'>design</span> <span m='38680'>ground</span> <span m='38950'>mount</span> <span m='39620'>structures,</span> <span m='40430'>which</span> <span m='40600'>is</span> <span m='41410'>large</span> <span m='41700'>utility</span> <span m='42200'>companies,</span> <span m='42780'>or</span> <span m='44610'>residential,</span> <span m='45660'>which</span> <span m='45850'>is</span> <span m='45950'>just</span> <span m='46190'>when</span> <span m='46330'>you</span> <span m='46420'>look</span> <span m='46620'>up</span> <span m='46780'>and</span> <span m='46900'>you</span> <span m='46960'>see</span> <span m='47160'>solar</span> <span m='47440'>panels</span> <span m='47770'>on</span> <span m='47840'>the</span> <span m='47910'>roof,</span> <span m='48760'>all</span> <span m='48960'>the</span> <span m='49070'>metal</span> <span m='49480'>and</span> <span m='49550'>aluminum</span> <span m='50040'>underneath</span> <span m='50410'>it,</span> <span m='51070'>or</span> <span m='52990'>commercial</span> <span m='53760'>buildings.</span> <span m='54010'>So</span> <span m='54270'>we</span> <span m='54380'>do</span> <span m='54540'>all</span> <span m='54730'>types</span> <span m='55010'>of</span> <span m='55060'>mounting.</span> <span m='55710'>People</span> <span m='56190'>come</span> <span m='56430'>to</span> <span m='56590'>us</span> <span m='56960'>with</span> <span m='57120'>problems,</span> <span m='57820'>and</span> <span m='57980'>we</span> <span m='58580'>figure</span> <span m='58890'>out</span> <span m='59030'>with</span> <span m='59200'>our</span> <span m='59300'>programs</span> <span m='61180'>how</span> <span m='61340'>best</span> <span m='61640'>to</span> <span m='61730'>configure</span> <span m='62055'>our</span> <span m='62380'>materials</span> <span m='63060'>to</span> <span m='63360'>hold up the</span> <span m='63620'>modules</span> <span m='64080'>that will</span> <span m='64200'>work.</span> </p><p><span m='65830'>I</span> <span m='66530'>never</span> <span m='66820'>did</span> <span m='67120'>really</span> <span m='67370'>well</span> <span m='67670'>in</span> <span m='67790'>school,</span> <span m='68570'>so</span> <span m='69540'>I</span> <span m='69730'>have</span> <span m='69920'>done</span> <span m='70090'>a</span> <span m='70150'>lot</span> <span m='70420'>of</span> <span m='70510'>jobs</span> <span m='71010'>in</span> <span m='71130'>my</span> <span m='71270'>life</span> <span m='71720'>trying</span> <span m='71950'>to</span> <span m='72010'>figure</span> <span m='72330'>out</span> <span m='72540'>what</span> <span m='72760'>I</span> <span m='72870'>want</span> <span m='73070'>to</span> <span m='73130'>do,</span> <span m='75160'>everything</span> <span m='75550'>from</span> <span m='77000'>property</span> <span m='77410'>management</span> <span m='78190'>to</span> <span m='80020'>construction</span> <span m='81010'>to</span> <span m='83980'>a</span> <span m='84680'>lot.</span> <span m='84900'>It's</span> <span m='84980'>so</span> <span m='85170'>many</span> <span m='85340'>different</span> <span m='85650'>things,</span> <span m='85990'>I'm</span> <span m='86110'>a</span> <span m='86190'>little</span> <span m='86430'>embarrassed</span> <span m='86820'>to even</span> <span m='87210'>tell you.</span> <span m='88780'>I</span> <span m='88810'>was</span> <span m='88990'>at a</span> <span m='89050'>point in</span> <span m='89370'>my</span> <span m='89470'>life</span> <span m='89700'>when</span> <span m='89820'>I</span> <span m='89850'>was</span> <span m='90040'>doing</span> <span m='90990'>property</span> <span m='91330'>management,</span> <span m='91840'>hardscape</span> <span m='92440'>and</span> <span m='92710'>landscaping.</span> <span m='93560'>And</span> <span m='93880'>I</span> <span m='93930'>was</span> <span m='94190'>like,</span> <span m='95890'>I'm</span> <span m='95960'>not</span> <span m='96130'>quite</span> <span m='96320'>sure</span> <span m='96530'>what</span> <span m='96690'>I</span> <span m='96730'>want</span> <span m='96910'>to</span> <span m='96950'>do,</span> <span m='97310'>so</span> <span m='97470'>I</span> <span m='97500'>actually</span> <span m='97710'>went</span> <span m='97990'>back</span> <span m='98210'>to</span> <span m='98280'>school.</span> <span m='98830'>Right</span> <span m='98980'>now, I'm</span> <span m='99180'>41</span> <span m='99670'>years</span> <span m='99850'>old,</span> <span m='100280'>and when</span> <span m='100300'>I</span> <span m='100330'>was</span> <span m='100520'>in</span> <span m='100600'>my</span> <span m='101190'>mid30s,</span> <span m='101710'>I</span> <span m='101760'>went</span> <span m='102000'>back</span> <span m='102240'>to</span> <span m='102320'>school.</span> </p><p><span m='104350'>And</span> <span m='105530'>one</span> <span m='105790'>of</span> <span m='105890'>my</span> <span m='106020'>coworkers</span> <span m='106800'>now</span> <span m='107360'>was</span> <span m='107560'>my</span> <span m='107700'>teacher.</span> <span m='109590'>And</span> <span m='109890'>he</span> <span m='111140'>sort</span> <span m='111400'>of</span> <span m='111480'>inspired</span> <span m='111960'>me</span> <span m='112100'>to</span> <span m='112270'>get</span> <span m='112470'>into</span> <span m='113806'>the</span> <span m='114260'>solar</span> <span m='114660'>field</span> <span m='115010'>by--</span> <span m='116610'>the</span> <span m='116730'>programs</span> <span m='117230'>I</span> <span m='117280'>was</span> <span m='117450'>just</span> <span m='117660'>talking</span> <span m='117950'>about,</span> <span m='118215'>about</span> <span m='118480'>the</span> <span m='118550'>3D</span> <span m='118950'>design</span> <span m='119360'>work,</span> <span m='120150'>he</span> <span m='120280'>showed</span> <span m='120690'>me</span> <span m='120930'>that</span> <span m='121390'>that's</span> <span m='121590'>what</span> <span m='121750'>they</span> <span m='121900'>do.</span> <span m='122690'>And</span> <span m='122940'>I</span> <span m='123040'>was</span> <span m='123250'>so</span> <span m='123590'>jazzed</span> <span m='124000'>about</span> <span m='124270'>it</span> <span m='124390'>that</span> <span m='124560'>I</span> <span m='124650'>started</span> <span m='125250'>just</span> <span m='125540'>picking</span> <span m='125710'>it</span> <span m='125930'>up</span> <span m='126270'>just</span> <span m='126470'>to</span> <span m='126570'>try</span> <span m='126760'>to</span> <span m='126830'>get a</span> <span m='127290'>better</span> <span m='127560'>grade</span> <span m='127950'>in</span> <span m='128080'>his</span> <span m='128280'>class</span> <span m='129479'>and</span> <span m='129979'>got</span> <span m='130160'>really</span> <span m='130370'>good</span> <span m='130590'>at</span> <span m='130750'>it.</span> <span m='131030'>So</span> <span m='131160'>he</span> <span m='131310'>said,</span> <span m='131570'>oh,</span> <span m='131680'>I</span> <span m='131760'>know</span> <span m='131910'>some</span> <span m='132110'>companies</span> <span m='132540'>that</span> <span m='132670'>look</span> <span m='132860'>for</span> <span m='133030'>people</span> <span m='133400'>that</span> <span m='135520'>want</span> <span m='135720'>this</span> <span m='135900'>program.</span> <span m='136190'>So</span> <span m='136320'>he</span> <span m='136650'>introduced</span> <span m='137150'>me</span> <span m='137280'>to</span> <span m='137450'>my</span> <span m='137540'>boss now.</span> </p><p><span m='137850'>So I</span> <span m='138160'>sort</span> <span m='138340'>of</span> <span m='138420'>did</span> <span m='138570'>fall</span> <span m='138890'>into</span> <span m='139220'>it.</span> <span m='139810'>My</span> <span m='139960'>intention</span> <span m='140460'>was</span> <span m='140690'>to</span> <span m='140790'>go</span> <span m='140920'>back</span> <span m='141160'>to</span> <span m='141240'>school</span> <span m='141590'>to</span> <span m='141700'>learn</span> <span m='141920'>all</span> <span m='142090'>about</span> <span m='142310'>the</span> <span m='142370'>solar</span> <span m='142740'>industry,</span> <span m='145180'>but</span> <span m='145770'>I</span> <span m='145890'>actually</span> <span m='146230'>got</span> <span m='146730'>into</span> <span m='147110'>it</span> <span m='147300'>from</span> <span m='148240'>having</span> <span m='148610'>fun</span> <span m='148820'>at</span> <span m='148880'>a</span> <span m='148970'>computer.</span> <span m='149290'>It's like</span> <span m='149610'>playing a</span> <span m='149930'>video</span> <span m='150220'>game</span> <span m='150580'>all day,</span> <span m='150780'>but</span> <span m='151030'>I</span> <span m='151140'>get</span> <span m='151330'>paid</span> <span m='151460'>for it,</span> <span m='152380'>which is</span> <span m='152800'>fun.</span> </p><p><span m='153640'>So</span> <span m='154150'>now</span> <span m='154360'>I'm</span> <span m='154480'>pretty</span> <span m='154710'>settled.</span> <span m='155190'>I</span> <span m='155290'>think</span> <span m='155510'>this</span> <span m='155650'>is</span> <span m='155800'>probably</span> <span m='156040'>the</span> <span m='156140'>last</span> <span m='156470'>job</span> <span m='156620'>I'll ever</span> <span m='156910'>have.</span> <span m='157400'>So</span> <span m='157890'>after</span> <span m='158190'>going</span> <span m='158420'>through</span> <span m='159570'>eight</span> <span m='159790'>or</span> <span m='159860'>nine</span> <span m='160110'>different</span> <span m='160390'>jobs</span> <span m='161668'>and</span> <span m='162082'>two</span> <span m='162496'>children</span> <span m='163255'>of</span> <span m='163600'>my</span> <span m='163780'>own</span> <span m='163980'>now,</span> <span m='164275'>I</span> <span m='164570'>feel</span> <span m='164790'>like</span> <span m='165000'>I'm</span> <span m='165483'>planted.</span> </p><p><span m='167898'>If I</span> <span m='168381'>had</span> <span m='168864'>known</span> <span m='169830'>that</span> <span m='175840'>I</span> <span m='176000'>really</span> <span m='176340'>didn't</span> <span m='176730'>want--</span> <span m='177520'>instead</span> <span m='177840'>of</span> <span m='177930'>having</span> <span m='178190'>a</span> <span m='178250'>specific</span> <span m='178850'>job,</span> <span m='179100'>I</span> <span m='179250'>need</span> <span m='179450'>to</span> <span m='179530'>grow</span> <span m='179790'>up</span> <span m='179950'>and</span> <span m='180060'>be</span> <span m='180340'>a--</span> <span m='180930'>or</span> <span m='181120'>I</span> <span m='181220'>need</span> <span m='181390'>to</span> <span m='181470'>figure</span> <span m='181900'>out</span> <span m='182110'>what</span> <span m='182270'>I</span> <span m='182320'>want</span> <span m='182500'>to</span> <span m='182550'>do</span> <span m='182710'>with</span> <span m='182870'>my</span> <span m='183020'>life.</span> <span m='184400'>That</span> <span m='184590'>doesn't</span> <span m='184900'>work.</span> <span m='185720'>For</span> <span m='185830'>me,</span> <span m='186280'>I</span> <span m='186380'>just</span> <span m='186690'>tried</span> <span m='186970'>as</span> <span m='187120'>many</span> <span m='187340'>things</span> <span m='187540'>as</span> <span m='187670'>I</span> <span m='187980'>could.</span> <span m='188790'>And</span> <span m='189090'>I</span> <span m='189130'>think</span> <span m='189380'>when</span> <span m='189500'>I</span> <span m='189580'>stopped</span> <span m='190320'>trying</span> <span m='190640'>to</span> <span m='190710'>figure</span> <span m='191090'>it</span> <span m='191170'>all</span> <span m='191470'>out,</span> <span m='191670'>it</span> <span m='191910'>just</span> <span m='192020'>sort</span> <span m='192340'>of</span> <span m='193590'>fell</span> <span m='194030'>into</span> <span m='194230'>my</span> <span m='194330'>lap.</span> <span m='194830'>But</span> <span m='195000'>I</span> <span m='195070'>did</span> <span m='195310'>find</span> <span m='195590'>something</span> <span m='195980'>that</span> <span m='196150'>I--</span> <span m='197515'>I</span> <span m='197970'>like</span> <span m='198150'>video</span> <span m='198460'>games,</span> <span m='199140'>and</span> <span m='199450'>my</span> <span m='199590'>job</span> <span m='199900'>now</span> <span m='200200'>is</span> <span m='200820'>I can</span> <span m='201272'>actually</span> <span m='201724'>get</span> <span m='202176'>paid</span> <span m='203080'>to</span> <span m='203500'>draw</span> <span m='203795'>a</span> <span m='204090'>3D</span> <span m='204540'>design</span> <span m='205120'>and</span> <span m='205660'>draw.</span> <span m='205930'>So</span> <span m='206110'>I</span> <span m='206180'>sort</span> <span m='206660'>of</span> <span m='206730'>fell</span> <span m='207020'>into</span> <span m='207340'>it.</span> <span m='207730'>I</span> <span m='208120'>was</span> <span m='208240'>very</span> <span m='208470'>lucky.</span> <span m='208750'>I</span> <span m='208770'>found</span> <span m='209000'>a</span> <span m='209040'>place</span> <span m='209490'>that</span> <span m='209805'>would</span> <span m='210120'>allow</span> <span m='210581'>me to</span> <span m='211042'>do what</span> <span m='211503'>I like.</span> </p><p><span m='211964'>But</span> <span m='212890'>if</span> <span m='213243'>I</span> <span m='214020'>had</span> <span m='214250'>to</span> <span m='214320'>do</span> <span m='214510'>it</span> <span m='214580'>all</span> <span m='214840'>again,</span> <span m='215160'>I</span> <span m='215300'>would</span> <span m='215910'>probably</span> <span m='217270'>take</span> <span m='217490'>it</span> <span m='217580'>a</span> <span m='217630'>little</span> <span m='217870'>easy</span> <span m='218280'>on</span> <span m='218370'>myself</span> <span m='218910'>instead</span> <span m='219230'>of</span> <span m='219320'>trying</span> <span m='219700'>to</span> <span m='221600'>figure it</span> <span m='222100'>out.</span> <span m='222390'>What</span> <span m='222720'>am I going</span> <span m='222860'>to do</span> <span m='223040'>with</span> <span m='223130'>my</span> <span m='223240'>life?</span> <span m='223670'>It's</span> <span m='223860'>like,</span> <span m='224050'>just</span> <span m='224270'>go</span> <span m='224400'>start</span> <span m='224750'>doing</span> <span m='225000'>things.</span> <span m='225880'>And</span> <span m='226410'>eventually,</span> <span m='229390'>I</span> <span m='229950'>found</span> <span m='230220'>what</span> <span m='230650'>I'm</span> <span m='230740'>supposed</span> <span m='231170'>to be</span> <span m='231240'>doing.</span> </p><p><span m='233580'>The</span> <span m='233760'>other</span> <span m='233990'>advice</span> <span m='234380'>I</span> <span m='234440'>would</span> <span m='234590'>have</span> <span m='234880'>is</span> <span m='235040'>that</span> <span m='235400'>for</span> <span m='235530'>the</span> <span m='235620'>longest</span> <span m='236100'>time,</span> <span m='236450'>I</span> <span m='236550'>was</span> <span m='236580'>trying</span> <span m='236820'>to--</span> <span m='236950'>everyone</span> <span m='237330'>wants to</span> <span m='237480'>find</span> <span m='237790'>out</span> <span m='237910'>what</span> <span m='238110'>happiness</span> <span m='238550'>is.</span> <span m='239600'>For</span> <span m='239730'>me,</span> <span m='240000'>I</span> <span m='240060'>just</span> <span m='240320'>thought</span> <span m='240500'>happiness</span> <span m='241060'>was</span> <span m='241210'>like</span> <span m='241380'>having</span> <span m='241750'>fun.</span> <span m='243000'>But</span> <span m='243230'>since</span> <span m='243510'>finding</span> <span m='243850'>this</span> <span m='244110'>job</span> <span m='244530'>and</span> <span m='244950'>this</span> <span m='245310'>industry,</span> <span m='246090'>which</span> <span m='246520'>we</span> <span m='246980'>all</span> <span m='247110'>feel</span> <span m='248460'>proud</span> <span m='248790'>to</span> <span m='248850'>be</span> <span m='249070'>in--</span> <span m='249320'>the</span> <span m='249430'>solar,</span> <span m='249890'>doing</span> <span m='250350'>good</span> <span m='250540'>for</span> <span m='250690'>the</span> <span m='250770'>world--</span> <span m='252340'>it</span> <span m='252490'>was</span> <span m='254180'>finding</span> <span m='254580'>purpose.</span> </p><p><span m='256670'>I</span> <span m='257050'>feel</span> <span m='257269'>like</span> <span m='257470'>I</span> <span m='257490'>have</span> <span m='257700'>purpose.</span> <span m='258300'>I go</span> <span m='258399'>to</span> <span m='258550'>work.</span> <span m='259130'>They</span> <span m='259269'>rely</span> <span m='259534'>on</span> <span m='259800'>me.</span> <span m='260105'>We're</span> <span m='260410'>doing</span> <span m='260874'>something</span> <span m='261338'>good.</span> <span m='262266'>And</span> <span m='263073'>because</span> <span m='263760'>in</span> <span m='264400'>my</span> <span m='264550'>job</span> <span m='264950'>I</span> <span m='265050'>feel</span> <span m='265300'>like</span> <span m='265630'>I have</span> <span m='265730'>purpose,</span> <span m='266690'>it's</span> <span m='266870'>also</span> <span m='267220'>fun</span> <span m='267650'>at the</span> <span m='268076'>same time.</span> <span m='268502'>So it's</span> <span m='269780'>not</span> <span m='270010'>always</span> <span m='270210'>about</span> <span m='270390'>having</span> <span m='270770'>fun,</span> <span m='271060'>that's</span> <span m='271290'>not</span> <span m='271450'>happiness.</span> <span m='271750'>Happiness</span> <span m='272231'>is</span> <span m='274640'>feeling</span> <span m='275310'>like</span> <span m='275500'>you have</span> <span m='275800'>purpose</span> <span m='276400'>in</span> <span m='276700'>whatever</span> <span m='277000'>way.</span> </p>","file":{"id":255822,"video_id":"2698606061001","name":"70214271","duration":278058,"thumbnail_url":null}});