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Rogers’ partnership with Cristo Rey work study program provides valuable experience to students

12/17/19 03:16:pm

Laura & Gaby sm.jpgFor three years now, Rogers Behavioral Health and the Foundation have been participants in the Cristo Rey Jesuit school’s work study program, which pairs students with area businesses to allow them to gain work experience and help them determine what career to pursue later in life.

Laura Miller, Foundation development coordinator, supervises the Foundation’s students from this program and says that it provides teenagers with the opportunity to learn more about Rogers and the Foundation, and experience what it’s like working at a non-profit.

“We hope the students’ experiences with the Foundation will help guide them in decisions about their adult future. Not only do the students provide an extra set of hands during some very busy times in our department, but since they’re new to Rogers, they give us another viewpoint regarding our marketing materials and processes.”

Laura’s student partner Gaby, who is currently a junior at Cristo Rey, has worked with Rogers since her freshman year of high school. As a freshman and sophomore, Gaby worked in the Human Resources department, but Laura offered her the chance to work within the Foundation to gain some new experiences.

While Gaby has considered moving to jobs at other organizations, she decided that she couldn’t “because of how good Rogers staff was to me.”

“Rogers is like a second home for me,” Gaby says. “Every week I’ve looked forward to coming to work, seeing my co-workers, and working on different tasks.”

By working with us for multiple years, Gaby says that she also has a better understanding of what Rogers does for people and how even those who are not part of the treatment team should also take pride in what the organization accomplishes.

“With Rogers and The Foundation, I learned that helping people, whether it’s behind the scenes, treating patients, or receiving donations that go to patients makes a big difference in the world,” she says.

Gaby's work at the Foundation includes entering data into spreadsheets, helping sort donations, packing gifts for the holidays, filing projects, and assisting in the Foundation’s big events, such as the Celebrate the Light Gala.

Laura explains, “When we’re getting ready for our gala fundraising event, Gaby helps with just about every aspect of it, from taking pictures of raffle and auction items, proofing the event program, putting together nametags and table numbers, to packing up all the supplies needed for the event.

She continues saying that Gaby even “graciously volunteered at the event on her own time” which let her see the results of her hard work.

Gaby says that one aspect of the job this year that really surprised her was how much time and effort went into planning the events. When she started at the Foundation in August, she found it odd that there was work already underway for the gala, which isn’t held until November.

“Surely enough it wasn’t too early because soon it was November, and the Foundation was hard at work on the final touches for the gala,” Gaby says. “Their hard work really showed the night of the gala because it was a complete success. Taking part of something that helps patients and others in the community felt amazing.”

Laura, who has worked with several students over the years, says that each brings unique qualities. Gaby, she says, is a detail-oriented individual, which assists her when working in the database to update general information or helping to proofread marketing materials.

Gaby plans to dual major in nursing and Spanish when she attends college.

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