Success Stories: Anthony James Baumgartner

Program: GED
Graduation Date: Spring of 2010

Current Employer and Job Title: I am a full time actor. I have worked on/with (Post Graduation) MTV, Starz Network, Illusion Scenic Productions, ABC, and many others.

Former Job or Career: I had always worked toward becoming an actor. While going to school, I had a job as a cook at a small restaurant in Deland and another job at the Winn Dixie grocery store.

Anything is possible if you set your mind to it

Why Lake Tech?

My mother thought it was a good thing to try, and the school offered other programs which could lead to a “steady job. My first step was to take the GED and get my high school diploma.

How was Lake Tech different from other schools you have attended?

I was actually home schooled most of my life, so really it wasn’t that different. The big difference was I was surrounded with people who made poor choices and now wanted to change their life. It was great that way because we all kind of held each other up. Everyone wanted a better life and finally got up the confidence to go back to school, or switch careers, or whatever it was they had been afraid to do. Add the great teachers, that of course just want the best for you, and that’s when real magic happens.

How long did it take you to complete your training?

I was there a year. My teachers had said that I was ready way before I took the GED exam, but I wanted to be sure. I gave myself a one year accomplish earning my diploma. I also wanted to decide where and what I wanted to be. I also was waiting to take the GED exam with a friend that had started about the same time. We were friends, and I couldn’t just leave him behind, so we took the test and passed it together.

What did you learn in your program that prepared you for your job?

I learned patience. It was always a thing I’ve had a hard time with. The class and teachers helped me learn that nothing happens over night. This was such a hard thing to learn and really understand.

Describe your best experience while a student at Lake Tech.

We had a new teacher who had only been working a few weeks, and I came into school that morning and was really, really upset over this girl I had been dating. I did poorly on a test and was, just having a really rough day. He had noticed that I was upset and said, “Anthony, would you give me a hand with something outside here real quickly?” He spent some time listening to me which really meant a lot. All the teachers and fellow students were very supportive. That was my best experience of all.

What is one thing that future students should know about Lake Tech?

The teachers are there because they want to be. Lake Tech offers teachers that can give you hands on help and coaching, which most times is not possible at a high school or university. So, take your time, breathe, and make a daily list of what you want to accomplish. When you accomplish things on the list, check them off. This helps, the teachers help, and you can help yourself. I did, and others before me have to, and so can you!

Do you have plans to continue your education?

After I graduated Lake Tech, I had told myself I wanted to try out college. I applied and was accepted to many schools across the U.S., then decided upon The Academy of Arts University in San Francisco, California. While studying and maintaining an A average, I broke into the modeling and acting. I’ve been on several commercials and am currently working as an actor.