I was a high school junior in Brooklyn when a flyer on a job board bulletin board caught my eye. A job skills education program called This Way Ahead offered internships at Old Navy and Gap stores.
I sat in on an information session at The Door, which is a youth development non-profit in New York. They told us, “You have to bring your ‘A’ game. You can’t be late. You have to complete assignments. Or, you’re out.” It was scary – but that made me want to do it more.
I attended development classes and worked on resume writing, time management, and communications skills. Before learning how to interact with customers, I couldn’t imagine striking up a conversation with a stranger. It was several months of after-school classes and in-store training and then I was selected for an internship and job as a sales associate at my neighborhood Old Navy.
It was my first real job. When it came to writing college application essays, I wrote about This Way Ahead and how it taught me about the rewards that can come when you take chances.
Guess what? I got in. In a couple weeks, I’m moving to Clark Atlanta University. Yes, it’s scary. But, that's why I can hardly wait!