Luciano Garreffi '21
Luciano Garreffi of Lancaster, a Class of 2021 graduate from the Advanced Manufacturing career major, was a Student Ambassador and played on the soccer and tennis teams. Luciano spoke several times with middle school students who were considering applying to Minuteman. Luciano loves hands-on learning and enjoyed his time in the Advanced Manufacturing career major, which had him working on high-tech machinery. He worked as a snowboarding instructor at Wachusett Mountain and has enlisted with the U.S. Marines.
Q. What is the culture like at Minuteman High School?
Minuteman is a very welcoming community. Once you get into your CTE shop, you’re in a group with 12 or 15 other kids who have the same interests as you and you get closer over the years. You do projects together, you bounce ideas off each other. I hang out with them outside of school. We’ve gone on snowboarding trips in the mountains. We’re all from different towns, and I’m friends with kids I never would have had the chance to meet if I had not come to Minuteman. I’ve made a lot of tight bonds.
Q. How would you describe Minuteman?
Minuteman is a lot different from a traditional high school. We have a week of academics – like math, history, and science – and then you have a week in your career technical education (CTE) shop, where you do hands-on learning. It puts you in an environment that simulates careers in the real world. You get to use your hands to create real things. And once you’re a junior or a senior, you can apply for co-op, where you get to work on a job site. You can make money and it counts toward school. It’s a really great program.
Q. What do you like the most about Minuteman?
Every day I come into my shop, I know there is always going to be a new challenge, and that I’ll need to overcome that challenge to find a solution. It’s a great feeling to use what you’ve learned to find solutions and solve problems.
I came to Minuteman hoping to get hands-on experience, and Minuteman definitely exceeded those expectations. I get to do a lot of hands-on work, a lot of 3D modeling, stuff I’m always excited to do.
I like learning with my hands. I like creating something that I came up with in my head and modeling it into a physical object… and turning it into a real-world application. At Minuteman, you have the opportunity to work with high-tech machines that you would never get to use in a traditional high school.
Q. Are you working on any interesting projects?
Yeah. I’m excited to work on my senior project. I’m making a ball-bearing pusher for a skateboard. Basically, you have a wheel and two ball bearings and it pushes them together to make the wheel roll. I’m making the actual contraption by hand. I’m going to design the parts in a CAD program, then I’m going to write the code and create them using a Haas Mini Mill [machine.] I’ve been thinking about this since my freshman year. I’m excited to show off what I’ve learned over the four years at Minuteman.
Q. How do you like the new school building?
The new building has so many great aspects to it and so many high-tech designs. It’s very well fit for each shop. It’s a lot more accessible and easier to move around. In my shop, Advanced Manufacturing, I work very closely with Engineering and Metal Fabrication/Welding, and now we’re located right next to those shops in the trades hall. It’s very helpful to walk from one room to the next to work on my project. The cafeteria is much bigger and you can eat outside in the courtyard on nice days. It’s a great experience coming to this new school.
Q. What would you tell students thinking about applying to Minuteman?
Just remember that everyone is in the same boat. Everyone is from different towns and they’re all meeting new people. You are going to make new friends that you never would have been able to meet before. If you do extracurricular activities like sports or clubs, it’s a great way to meet new people and form tight bonds. I play soccer and I’ve gotten close to my teammates and coach. The guidance counselors are very good and they’ll be there to support you. You won’t feel alone or out of place. It’s a very welcoming community here at Minuteman.