MOORESVILLE, N.C., Oct. 26, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- When Taryn Parrino was growing up in Baton Rouge, La., a career in racing was not something she considered, making the 26 year-old's current role at JRi Shocks, LLC a surprise even to her. (Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20121026/LA01419) "I was always into automotive, but the racing aspect came later," said Parrino. "There wasn't a lot of it where I grew up; the only thing that was big was drag racing." With her one-year anniversary at JRi Shocks approaching, Parrino is continuing to learn every day on the job. "Because we're a smaller company, employees have the opportunity to touch a lot of different aspects of the design, manufacturing, sales and shipping processes," said Parrino. Parrino's job duties are very different from what she originally thought she would be doing, not within JRi Shocks, but because a few years ago Parrino had plans of becoming a biologist. After high school, Parrino enrolled at Louisiana State University ( LSU) where she pursued a degree in biology. It's hard to imagine a biologist trading in the lab coat for a racing suit, but that's exactly what happened – eventually. It was during her time at LSU that Parrino really started thinking about an alternative career. "What I liked most were my physics and math classes, and that's when I started leaning toward engineering," Parrino said. "It's the engineering and technology that drew me in and piqued my interest." By the time Parrino graduated from LSU in 2010 with a biology degree in hand, a career in that field was an afterthought, and NASCAR Technical Institute (NASCAR Tech) was on the horizon. "If you want a job in the industry, NASCAR Tech is where it's at," said Parrino, describing her reason for choosing NASCAR Tech. Parrino headed to Mooresville, N.C. – known as "Race City, USA" - to start her new journey. While she was excited for the opportunity, those around her had a hard time understanding her reasoning. "Everyone was like, 'that's pretty crazy,'" Parrino said. "I wasn't passionate about biology, though, and you only have so much time to figure out what you want to do."