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From Intern to Employee, Felicity’s Story of Success: Changing the Life of Her Employer

Felicity filling out her application for employment

Felicity entered into the Community Connections, Inc. (CCI) Pre-ETS program in September 2017 with the hope of finding a part-time job that she loved after her 10-week internship. CCI’s Pre-ETS program stands for Pre Employment Transition Services and allows students who are finishing high school to have an opportunity to learn and grow independently and become a work-ready member of the community.

Felicity was assigned to work with Marie Almedia who is a Pre Employment Transition Specialist at CCI. When Marie first met Felicity at Gallishaw High School, she saw a look of determination in her eyes.  At their first meeting, Marie asked Felicity what her interests were, what she wanted to do for work, what she didn’t want to do, and just got to know her as a person. After their meeting, Marie went out searching and marketing to local businesses to find the perfect fit for Felicity. The first business Marie went into, she knew it was the one.

Left to Right: Marie Almeida – Pre-ETS Specialist, Felicity, Rita Silva – manager of Fall River Laundry, Tom Sullivan – owner of Fall River Laundry

Marie met with Tom Sullivan who was the owner of Fall River Laundry and the manager, Rita Silva. Tom said they had never worked with a program like CCI before but had worked with kids in Vocational Schools and was more than willing to have Felicity complete her 10-week internship with them.

A few days later, Felicity met with Tom and Rita to answer some introductory questions and was hired as a paid intern. Felicity started working at Fall River Laundry 5 hours per week (2 days). Some of her tasks included greeting customers, cleaning the machines, helping customers wash, dry and fold laundry, and other janitorial duties.When Felicity first started her job, she lacked self-confidence, rushed through her tasks and was shy towards customers. After two weeks, Tom and Rita noticed that Felicity was coming out of her shell, becoming more confident, and having a positive impact on both Tom and Rita and the regulars that came into the laundry mat every week.  They saw she slowed down her pace, was friendly and confident to others, and completed tasks without hesitation.

Throughout the 10-week internship program, Felicity did not miss a single day of work and was only late once. One the day she was late, she was willing to make up the time she missed by staying later than her normal work hours. Felicity says her internship taught her responsibility, gives her independence and helps her feel like she has achieved something. From the beginning, this internship has taught her to be committed to a job and to always work hard.

Felicity had such a positive impact on Tom, Rita, and everyone at Fall River Laundry that on Wednesday, January 16th, she was hired as a part-time employee working 15-20 hours per week.

Tom said “Having Felicity around has impacted us and the employees she works with the outstanding job she has done and the great work qualities she possesses. Sometimes people forget that business is more than just numbers, it’s also about the human element and Felicity has helped reclaim that for us. I encourage other Fall River businesses to work with CCI, give back and provide opportunities”.  CCI looks forward to working with Fall River Laundry for years to come.

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