PIQUA — During winter break, Zac Gordon, a Miami East High School junior attending the Horticulture and Landscape Management program at Upper Valley Career Center, took the time to apply for a grant to attend the Grunder Landscaping’s GROW! 2017 Conference.
The three-day conference, billed as the “The Ultimate Learning Experience: for landscape professionals — by landscape professionals,” might not sound like a good time to most 16-year olds, but this young man already thinks like a pro.
On Feb. 8, 9, and 10, Gordon and UVCC instructor John Kreitzer were excited to spend time with hundreds of landscape professionals from all across the U.S. at the GROW! 2017 Conference. Gordon was one of four scholarship recipients and the only one from a high school. Event organizers extended the scholarship to include Kreitzer since the conference was in Dayton.
Gordon, the son of Mark and Shelly Gordon of Piqua, said in 2010, when his father took over the company he worked for, now MGZ Lawn and Ground Care, LLC, in Dayton, something clicked.
“Up until then, I wanted to be a Ford engineer or work in law enforcement. I had zero interest in a landscaping career,” Gordon said.
The more he learned from watching and helping his dad, the more that fledgling interest grew into a passion and a drive to learn more and do better.
Now after school and weekends, you will find young Gordon in the company office, shop, or on job sites helping with anything and everything from cleanup, billing, and supervising a crew to operating a plow truck – he enjoys it all.