By Humphrey Magwira
Genesys Works, Class of 2018
Emigrating from Tanzania, a country with fewer resources and even fewer opportunities than can be found in the United States, I arrived with little knowledge of the American education system. How to get into college was a mystery to me. This mystery was solved after I received help and direction from Genesys Works.
Clarity came through numerous college and career counseling sessions that provided significant information about things such as exploring different majors and career paths, applying for colleges and scholarships and more. It was thanks to this one-on-one guidance that I was able to apply and get accepted into Texas A&M’s College of Engineering. It is also thanks to Genesys Works that I am able to make important connections everyday using the professional and technical skills that I might not have otherwise acquired until after college.
The “get your first professional work experience at a major corporation” benefit of Genesys Works was a real deal-sealer for me when I first heard about the program during high school. The opportunity to leave school halfway through the day to go work in a unique corporate setting was unparalleled to any other experience that I knew previously. Participating in this paid internship before graduating high school, nonetheless, was the cherry on top. And it’s really tempting for someone like me who had no prior work experience to join Genesys Works and go through an experience that even college students dream of. This was my motivation for applying to the program, going through interviews, and attending eight weeks of skills training in the summer.
When my internship began, I finally started working at the company I was placed at – the Genesys Works National Office. It was definitely a new experience for me, but my skills training prepared me to adapt quickly. Working at the organization’s headquarters enabled me to learn more about the Genesys Works program. I worked on a mix of marketing and IT projects, using new software systems I was never exposed to previously, such as web content management, intranet, databases, and time-tracking. As a result of so much hands-on experience, my perspective on the most important benefit of Genesys Works changed.
Initially, I was focused on earning money to help my family with finances, so that my parents wouldn’t have to work so hard all the time. However, it soon became clear that this was a short-term solution to help out my family. My long-term goals evolved to include college, a degree in computer engineering, and a job as a computer engineer. Even though this was always my dream, it wasn’t clear how I would make it come true until participating in the Genesys Works program.
I am positive that I wouldn’t have been able to make my dream a reality if I hadn’t applied for Genesys Works my junior year of high school. The impact of this one action was great enough to transform that road that was once full of potholes into a smoother, more stable path that I know will one day lead me to a successful career and a better life for me and my family.
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