Class of 2014 Alumni Spotlight
Tom & Nick Bedrosian
– Posted Spring 2020
A Future Full of Flavor
Tucked away in the Whitin Machine Works building, located in Whitinsville, MA, we found two of our alumni transforming part of the historic mill into a modern 21st-century manufacturing space, and filling it full of flavors.
The Bedrosian brothers, Tom (Culinary Arts, Class of 2009) and Nick (Drafting & Design Technology, Class of 2014), kindly opened the doors at Brozzian to give us a taste of what they're all about, treating us to a behind-the-scenes tour, and chatting about their path to entrepreneurship. Through the highs and lows of running their company, the lessons learned while studying their trades still lingers — shaping the brothers and their business.
Born into a family with an entrepreneurial spirit, Tom and Nick chose to follow in their father Rick's footsteps, also a BVT alumnus (Carpentry, Class of 1976), when pursuing their vocational-technical education, as did their sister Ashley (Culinary Arts, Class of 2013).
Enrolled in trades they enjoyed and interested them, Tom and Nick envisioned careers resulting from their vocational choices and a future working in each of their respective industries.
“I have always had a love for food and for the creative aspect of making food,” said Tom. “At BVT, I dreamt of owning a restaurant. So after graduating, I decided to continue my education in Culinary Arts at Johnson and Wales University while Nick pursued Biomedical Engineering at Wentworth Institute of Technology.
“After working several years as a Sous Chef, I realized that was not the career I wanted anymore,” said Tom. “The hours of the culinary industry can be brutal at times. But I have a passion for creating great-tasting food. That passion for flavor sparked an idea that would later become Brozzian Spices.”
"Looking back, I think we always wanted to own a business together. The idea was tossed around a lot while we were growing up. But we started to seriously consider going into business together at the end of 2014. While I was in college, Tom began planning out the initial steps with our father on how to start the company," said Nick. They credit their parents, who've helped when they go to them with questions and their father specifically who aids in decisions along the way—many other friends and family who've assisted them when they needed it.
"Tom was influenced by his Culinary Arts training with the knowledge that seasonings play a crucial role in making food taste great. We agreed it was essential to develop products that give everyone the ability to create restaurant-quality taste right in their kitchen,” explains Nick.
In May of 2015, they made it official with Brozzian, LLC. The idea for the name combines “bros” with the end of their last name, “sian.” They then switched the S’s to Z’s to create Brozzian, pronounced Bro-Zee-in. Brozzian Spices is growing, but not without its struggles. “Starting your own business is very challenging. We’ve faced unknown obstacles that we didn’t even realize existed and had to adapt and change plans when things go astray,” explained Tom. “While there is a lot of work involved, we love what we do!”
When asked if they’ve ever had second thoughts about starting the company, they pause before Nick responds. "There will be high points and low points, but at the end of the day, you keep going because you've come this far. It is rather satisfying to look around at something we’ve created together from concept to current day, to see that where there was nothing before, there is now a thriving business. We are happy with our decision to start Brozzian.”
Making a difference in the food industry with their unique spice blends and dip mixes, hearing the glowing testimonials, and seeing the positive impact in the community, in the end, they said, that makes it all worth it.
As a way to give back to BVT, Tom and Nick partnered with the Class of 2023 for their winter fundraiser, which included a gift box of these five fabulous seasonings: All-Purpose, Grilling, Roasted Potato (YUM!), Sicilian, and New Orleans (Cajun Rub). This gift box truly delivered the gift of flavor.
Are you getting tired of cooking the same old dinners? Support your fellow alumni by stocking your kitchen with flavorful Brozzian products, which are available locally and can be ordered online at www.brozzian.com. Also, when visiting their website, be sure to view their gourmet recipes for home cooking made easy – release your creativity!
– Posted Fall 2014
Securing Goals and Living Dreams
The co-op program’s strict academic requirements and high expectations of excellence are a welcome challenge to many of Valley Tech’s nearly 1,200 goal-driven students. Rather than waiting for an opportunity to knock, co-op participants open the door themselves and step into the world of work. For many graduates, embracing the challenges of the co-op program has resulted in full-time employment within their chosen career fields.
Michelle Maynard of Northbridge is one such graduate. Following her 2014 graduation, Michelle began working full-time in an orthodontics office, a prospect she’d dreamed of since the age of twelve.
“I knew I loved teeth because when I was younger, I loved my braces,” Michelle recalled. “I loved the way they worked. I loved everything about them.”
Michelle’s passion for orthodontics motivated her to successfully apply to the Valley Tech Dental Assisting program. After building a strong foundational skillset in the program’s first two years, Michelle eagerly signed on for the co-op experience.
“I wanted to get out in the field as soon as possible because I knew that if this work was what I wanted to do, I’d have to go get it. Nothing was going to be handed to me,” Michelle said.
Coincidentally, Michelle’s job placement was at Family Orthodontics in Westborough, where she’d received her braces and discovered her passion for orthodontics several years prior. Utilizing the skills acquired at Valley Tech, Michelle quickly made an impression on her co-op employer.
“Michelle showed a lot of interest and a lot of aptitude,” recalled Dr. Nina Khedkar. “She quickly learned how to do the regular assisting work and it was predetermined that as soon as she graduated, she would start working full-time.”
Today, Michelle is ecstatic to be a full-time Orthodontic Assistant with her own chair and her own group of patients. Because she earned professional certificates at BVT and worked with actual patients through the co-op program, Michelle will be eligible in May of 2015 to tackle her next goal of becoming a Certified Orthodontic Assistant. In the long run, while working her dream job at Family Orthodontics, Michelle plans on saving enough money to enroll in dental school and become an orthodontist.
“I hope she gets the chance,” Dr. Khedkar said. “I know she has the ability to do it and that she’d be great at it. Michelle is an asset to this office and will excel in anything she tries to do.”
Although she still has goals to seek and secure, Michelle’s happy to have crossed off her goal of becoming an Orthodontic Assistant fresh out of high school. Looking back on the young girl who fell in love with her braces, Michelle hopes other goal-oriented youth of the Blackstone Valley will consider the life-changing benefits of a Valley Tech education.
“Anyone who has a dream, I would tell them to go for it,” Michelle said. “This was my dream when I was twelve years old. I went for it and now I’m here.”