Goodwill warehouse helping students graduate

Our warehouse team is assisting students at Pickaway-Ross Career and Technology Center in getting credits they need to graduate.

Kim Graves, volunteer coordinator at Pickaway-Ross, is working with about 160 students to ensure they get volunteer and/or work credits needed to obtain a seal for graduation. He connected with Goodwill
to help out when he came to the corporate office to get work feedback for a young man who did yard work over the summer for our HR Coordinator Kim Hoffman. While at the office, he spoke with COO Mark Hughes.

“I thought what a great opportunity to bring a van load of kids to their seal for graduation,” Kim said.

Students are working toward earning the Ohio Means Jobs Readiness Seal which includes work readiness training along with working a job or volunteering to obtain the seal. Not all students have access to be able to work or volunteer on their own due to lack of transportation, so Graves connects with places like Goodwill for students to volunteer during school hours and he transports them to the work site.

“It’s a win-win. The school students are getting a win by getting their hours and Goodwill gets volunteer help,” Graves said.

The students are helping with a variety of things at the warehouse such as learning basic packaging and shipping with eCommerce, recycling skills, sorting donations, and learning to use a pallet jack
– pretty much everything in the warehouse except driving the forklift, said Josh Carl, eCommerce manager.

“I think the kids are really eager and wanting to learn,” Josh said.

Evan Hice, a senior at Pickaway-Ross, said the experience so far is good. He was helping eCommerce with shipping which is a skill that could come in handy with his plans to start a business creating statues out of
scrap metal.

Students also are getting the chance to learn soft skills employers look for like work ethic, professionalism, and punctuality, Kim said. When not working, students are being taught other skills at the center such as doing job searches and resume writing.

“This is invaluable, especially for those kids who have never done anything like this,” Kim said.

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