August 25, 2023

Climb Hire Alumni, Meet the Climbers: Patrick McGaughey, Cohort 3

Patrick McGaughey is a Cohort 3 Climber.


I used to work for Starbucks as a shift supervisor. Originally, it was just a part-time gig as a barista while I tried to study computer science at San Francisco State University; however, when I moved my kids to the city without a support system, school became more challenging. Without help to care for them as I worked and went to school, my grades suffered, and I was eventually kicked out of school. I began working full-time at Starbucks and was quickly promoted to shift supervisor.

I spent a lot of time trying to find other ways to make up for my failures in school, but with student loan debt, I couldn’t find any further financial help. Starbucks supplemented a portion of tuition costs for ASU online; however, I still didn’t make enough money to pursue education even with that offer. I ended up in an environment where getting promoted or getting a raise was never going to happen, regardless of my hard work or dedication to the role.

I became very unsatisfied, anxious, and depressed as the years continued with me not finding stability for my family. During the pandemic, I took a leave of absence from my job to take care of my kids; my son and daughter were having a hard time and needed my full attention and support. I was let go during my leave, so I ended up withdrawing my entire 401k and portfolio to live off of while I would find something else to do.


I was frantically looking for a company to train me because I didn’t have a bachelor’s degree. It seemed that no company would ever hire me without one or the experience. I was looking for work left and right–spending money on LinkedIn Premium and other resources to better my results. Eventually, I got an email from Taylor introducing Climb Hire and how this community helped her in her own career journey. I decided to follow along with the interview process because I didn’t have any other leads. I had previously started with Trailhead but wasn’t sure if anyone would ever take it seriously. When I learned that Climb Hire used Trailhead to work towards the Salesforce Administration certification, I decided to dive in and see what it’s all about.

Climb Hire has been enriching in so many ways. I’ve gained a much stronger growth mindset, self-compassion, and self-esteem that I had lost long ago. I’ve gained a tremendous amount of skills and knowledge about the Salesforce platform and community. I’ve also had the opportunity to build relationships with other professionals trying to achieve the same goals. I’ve found new friends, social capital, and mentorship. I’ve learned to be curious about people that I don’t know, how to create a dialogue within that situation, and see its results. I’ve been able to lean on my natural generosity as a strength instead of an insecurity. Climb Hire has brought a lot of joy to my life in a time where I’ve felt unproductive and like I had no value. I often look forward to seeing everyone’s faces during our community events, meetings, and classes.


When I started this program, I had no idea what my future would look like, especially after taking out my entire retirement during a pandemic and not having a job. Thanks to Climb Hire, I now see myself being able to succeed in a role that I would enjoy doing: Salesforce administrator, business analyst, SCRUM master, or a part of service and solutions. I want to work for Salesforce, I think, or even Climb Hire. I’ve been finally able to accept and grow past not having a bachelor’s degree–I don’t think this is necessary to find a good job. With the help of the Climb Hire facilitators, fellows and community I’ve been able to earn my Salesforce Administrator Certification. Now, I see it’s more important and valuable to be good at your job and build relationships.

Climb Hire Alumna: Graciela Sandoval, Cohort 3
Climb Hire Perspective: Hope and Relationships Matter