Not Your Average High School Job
In partnership with Providence Cristo Rey High School of Indianapolis, KSM is providing two students the opportunity to learn new skills, gain professional work experience, and explore their interests.
Providence Cristo Rey students Marco Garcia, a junior, and Delance Stevenson, a senior, have been working with Johnathan Rubin, a collaboration technician with KSM’s Information Technology team, this semester as part of the school’s Corporate Work Study (CWS) program. CWS pairs students with a participating employer, where they work one day a week at a professional, entry-level job during the school year.
Programs like Providence Cristo Rey’s are important to the future workforce and provide a great way to build a pipeline of local talent.
Founded in 2007, Providence Cristo Rey provides a challenging college and career preparatory curriculum for students with economic need. Through CWS, the school partners with more than 100 Indianapolis-based companies across a wide range of industries and professions, including law, technology, accounting, insurance, healthcare, nonprofits, and academia, among others; this school year marks KSM’s first year of participation.
“Programs like Providence Cristo Rey’s are important to the future workforce and provide a great way to build a pipeline of local talent,” said Karen Hill, KSM’s director of talent acquisition and staffing. “Not only that, participating in this program as a corporate partner allows KSM to directly impact the lives of young people as they prepare for their futures. It’s another example of how KSM invests in our communities.”
Growth in the Workplace
As part of their responsibilities, Marco and Delance help Johnathan with setting up desktop computer stations, printers, and scanners; ensuring the software and hardware in the Indianapolis office’s conference rooms are functioning correctly; managing software licenses and inventory; and more.
“I now know how to install software on a computer. I feel like a hacker in a movie,” Delance joked. He continued, “What I like most is working with different people and how many different things I do in one day. It’s fascinating helping people, and working at this job has genuinely made me love Mondays.”
In addition to hands-on training, Marco and Delance are learning invaluable soft skills that will help them in their future careers.
“I’ve learned that communication is important. If I’m confused about a task, I have to ask questions to get clarification. Usually I wouldn’t do this because I thought it would make me look stupid, but for a job like KSM, asking questions is important,” said Marco.
The growth CWS students experience with exposure to the workplace is amazing to see, said Cindy Thompson, Providence Cristo Rey’s executive director of corporate work study.
“Our students’ communication skills are greatly improved by talking to all the adults at the worksite, and their confidence grows by having success at work. CWS truly is a transformational program.”
Bright Futures Ahead
Johnathan himself is a graduate of Providence Cristo Rey and got a head-start on his IT career working for Braden Business Systems through CWS.
Working with Marco and Delance has been a great full-circle experience for Johnathan. “It’s awesome to see both sides of the program,” he said. “When I was in it, I always told my supervisor I wanted to give students after me the chance he gave me. So, this is one of my dreams coming to fruition.”
While Delance is graduating from high school at the end of the semester, with plans to study health science at Ball State University or St. Joseph’s College, Marco will be back at KSM next year for his senior year. He is considering a career in cybersecurity.
“I like coming here every week, eager to do what’s next for me,” Marco said. “Having a job like this during high school is a huge opportunity. Once I apply for a job, working at KSM is going to be on my resume.”
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