Manuel has always been a good student, not because it came naturally, but because he worked hard. He was dedicated to his studies and never failed a grade. He was convinced that he had to study to succeed, but he was also aware that he would need to start working as soon as he finished high school. He was in his fourth year when he came to Forge. He enrolled in the Food Services course, as he knew that being a good waiter would be the first step in becoming a great chef. In December of 2007, Manuel graduated high school, completed the Forge program and was hired to work as a waiter in a Kempinksi hotel, along with his Forge classmate, Yesenia. After a couple of years of hard work, Manuel and Yesenia decided to start a family, sharing both their personal and professional lives forever.