After graduating from high school, Tyler Grubbs and Grant Morrison landed warehouse jobs at Roche, a multinational healthcare company with operations in Indianapolis. Both work as material handlers—jobs with critical importance to the distribution of Roche’s COVID-19 diagnostic test and Roche’s new antibody test for COVID-19 throughout the United States.
Where did you go to high school?
Tyler: Lawrence North High School. I loved high school. I played soccer all four years. Through that I made some lifelong friends who are still my best friends today. I was in an immersion program where from kindergarten through 12th grade, half of your classes are in Spanish. The cultural experiences I’ve had, such as having the opportunity to travel to Mexico, Brazil, Costa Rica, have all been amazing, eye-opening experiences.
Grant: Noblesville High School. High school was definitely a learning period for me. It took me a little bit of time to get up to speed. I wasn’t the best academic student. I hadn’t gotten time management down to help me be successful. Going into my senior year, I was faced with not knowing what I was going to do next.
Your jobs are behind the scenes, but how do you feel being part of the critical distribution of Roche’s COVID-19 diagnostic test?
Tyler: Every day I come to work I honestly feel that I’m doing my part in helping save people around the world. When the importance of what we’re really doing sank in, it was all the incentive needed to increase my productivity so patients can get these tests. There are days we work through our breaks. And that’s not something management asks us to do. They order us food and encourage us to take 30 minutes to refuel and then get back to it. But when you’re determined like we are, it’s not uncommon to see the finish line and say, “This is more important than me sitting down for 30 minutes for lunch.”
Grant: It’s pretty cool. If someone told me I’d be doing this important work on a global scale, I wouldn’t have believed them. It drives home the meaning of what we do. All through the ranks of Roche, I’ve felt the appreciation. The energy of my supervisor and co-workers is electric. We’ve really got each other’s backs.
What are your plans for the future?
Tyler: My plan is to finish my organizational leadership and supervision degree through IUPUI with a minor in Spanish. I also hope to become a leader in Roche. When I say that, I don’t mean I just want to be someone’s boss. I want to be someone who’s called upon to teach and guide employees to achieve optimal results.
Grant: Right now, I am going to Purdue University Global through a program Roche provides to employees. I’m working toward my associate degree in business administration. I’m looking to become a training and development specialist or a process specialist down the road. I definitely want to stay at Roche. It’s crucial to have a degree to be considered for the role, and I’m definitely putting my efforts toward that.
Any advice for the class of 2021?
Tyler: When kids get out of high school, they feel pressure to get this loan and go to school and put themselves in debt. I chose a different route. I found myself here using [employer] tuition reimbursement, not drowning in debt from the rising cost of college education.