SYRACUSE — Wawasee High School’s Work Based Learning program is a college and career readiness course designed to provide opportunities for students to explore and experience careers that require additional degrees or certifications following high school.
The emphasis of the experience is on applying skills developed through instruction and on learning new career competencies at the internship site. This paid or unpaid internship is tailored to the unique needs and interests of the student and is considered a high school capstone experience toward graduation and the fulfillment of the student’s meaningful future plan. There are 60-80 juniors and seniors in the WBL program.
Pathways Cooperative Student of the Month for January is Alex Troutman.
Following is a letter submitted by Bret Hite, manager of the North Webster Ace Hardware where Alex Troutman is an intern, to the Pathways Cooperative.
“I am writing to you on behalf of one of my crewmates/staff, Alex Troutman.
“Alex has been with me for nearly two years. He has come a long way since I first hired him. If memory serves me, I hired Alex in early to mid summer of 2018 to help out with loading and carrying out items for my customers; which he did extremely well.
“For all the younger people I hire their first priority to aid the customer and be ‘Johnny on the spot.’ Alex quickly made himself ‘Johnny on the spot’ all over the store. His personality and ‘can do’ attitude made it easy for him to jump into the register position, work at the service desk, assemble furniture, assemble grills, make deliveries and mix paint. Alex has made himself very valuable to North Webster Ace Hardware.
“This past summer, I paired Alex with the person who runs the tool department. The two of them work very well together.
“Alex has the ability and I have the confidence in Alex to work unsupervised. He is always doing something; it may be stocking shelves in the cleaning aisle or taking inventory of my Big Green Egg grills and accessories, but he rarely stops.
“Alex had my vote this year for ‘most improved.’ Alas, COVID-19 came along and my entire crew did an outstanding job of cleaning, staying safe and servicing our customers. This year, we didn’t have any single person get this award. But if anyone was a ‘standout,’ it was Alex.
“Thank you for your time.”
Below, Alex responded to questions posed to him by Pathways Cooperative staff.
“I am a senior at Wawasee High School. I am a team captain on the Wawasee super mileage team. I work at North Webster Ace Hardware. I am also a candidate for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Student Of The Year.”
Why is this company good for your future?
“This company is good for me because it teaches me how to solve problems that customers come in with.”
“I plan to attend Trine University in Angola and study mechanical engineering. With the degree I would like to design equipment and tools to improve products and processes.
“My favorite teacher is Traci Henn because whenever I need help with anything she will jump right on and help me out.”