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Interview with Rob Leifer, CCR Transfer Student

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Student Spotlight:
Rob Leifer is a current transfer student at CCR, and his mother, Ellen, is a court reporter in Denver. We wanted to know more about Rob and what got him into this profession.

 

Did you want to become a court reporter because of your mother? If not, what made you want to start?

Well, my mother has been a court reporter my entire life; so I knew a lot about the profession before I ever became interested in it. For whatever reason, boys don't typically aspire to follow in their mother's footsteps. Usually we want to be like our dads or do something different entirely. I went to music school on a scholarship after high school; and soon after, I started my career as a professional and touring musician. I was fortunate enough, through perseverance and some good luck, to be one of the rare musicians who actually made a living at it. I spent a lot of time on the road with various pop/rock acts, I played in the house band for American Idol for five seasons, and I got to play on some top-selling records. I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it. Unfortunately, however, the amount of work I was being offered started to diminish as I got older, and the amount of time I was spending on the road became harder on my family. I decided to start considering the idea of moving into another profession. I thought about going to culinary school because cooking has always been a passion of mine, and I even thought about going to business school and getting my MBA. My mother brought up the idea of court reporting, and that prompted me to start looking into it. I quickly came to the realization that court reporting was actually the perfect career for me. It would enable me to use my natural manual ability that I used as a musician; I could work freelance if I wanted to and have flexibility in my job; and, most importantly, I could make a great living doing a rather secret profession that very few people knew about. All in all, it just sounded so cool to me. I enrolled in court reporting school and never looked back. I truly do have a passion for it, and it reminds me of the same passion I had for music when I was 15 years old!

 

From a high-speed student perspective, what is your biggest piece of advice that you have for new students or anyone looking into this career?

The best advice I could give would be to go into this journey knowing and understanding how much dedication and grit it truly takes. This is not an easy skill to attain. If you don't seriously consider throwing your steno machine out the window on a weekly basis, you're probably not cut out for it. You have to work really hard and understand that this skill will not enter into you by osmosis. The most important part of the process, in my opinion, actually starts in theory class when you're setting up your foundation. Learn your theory, know your theory, and practice every day until you physically can't practice any more. If you have a solid background in your theory before you enter speed, it will really help you to fly through the program. Once you get into speed, don't worry about how anyone else is progressing but yourself. Stay focused, review your theory on a daily basis, and listen to everything your teachers tell you. This is an incredible career, but we don't get paid this much because it's easy. Let the "hard" be what makes it great for you!

 

What has your experience been like since transferring to CCR?

Transferring to CCR was the best decision I made on my journey through court reporting so far. CCR is truly the Harvard of court reporting schools. The teachers are professional and informative, and the administration is absolutely amazing. I can't say enough great things about how the school is run and how dedicated each and every staff member is to their students. My favorite element of the program at CCR has been their emphasis on time management. Being that I now have two little kids, adult responsibilities, and a host of other things going on in my life at any given time, I have certainly been guilty of not always managing my time efficiently. CCR has totally changed that for me and enabled me to organize my time and get the most out of the time I have available. I would tell any student who is enrolling in CCR to take advantage of everything this school has to offer.

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Guest Sunday, 15 December 2019

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