By Class of 2021 Young Professional Redeat Wattero
There is a lot of pressure in high school to figure out what I will be doing in the next 10 years, what college I’ll go to, what I am going to major in, etc. This is a really tough choice, and it’s all rooted in my interests and goals. The thought of going to college and having to figure out what I want to do in the future was daunting, especially because I don’t know much about it as a first-generation student. I knew that I needed a sense of direction or some experience to make the process easier and faster.
Since freshman year, I tried my best to explore my interests and passions, including STEM and finance careers. I gained experience through volunteering, working, or participating in certain programs. I applied to work at the Science Museum as a KAYSC Crew Member and through this, I learned about design and engineering skills. As I continued to explore careers and opportunities, my brother told me about a program he was about to pursue: Genesys Works. Learning about Genesys Works through my brother ultimately pushed me to do it, too.
At the beginning of my junior year, I didn’t think I would be where I am now, but with the influence of my brother – now a former high school intern at Prime Therapeutics and current college intern at Target – and others who participated in Genesys Works, I applied. I saw Genesys Works as an opportunity to explore the world of technology and business – two career pathways that I didn’t think I would embark on. However, I realized that even if I didn’t want to work intechnology or business, I could still benefit from the real-world experience if I took advantage of the opportunity. I have been able to gain real-world experiences, get college help, and of course, make money through this program.
Even though the summer skills training was virtual due to COVID, it was still a great experience. Everyone in my cohort made everything fun and interesting, and my program coordinator Fritz and technical trainer Jerry were great. After the 8-week training, I had more confidence in my communication skills as well as my technical knowledge. It prepared me well for the internship where I’m now employed.
As a current Material Master Data Intern at Patterson Companies, I’m now gaining real-world experience every day. I learn things as I work, communicate with others, solve problems, etc. Right now, I focus a lot on data entry, and my skills training learnings in Excel, troubleshooting, communication, and networking regularly come in handy. As I continue my internship I hope to learn even more skills and continue to meet new people. As for my future, I know I am now more equipped for what the future will hold because of my training and experience with Genesys Works. Though I don’t have my life figured out now, as I thought I would in freshman year, I know I am on the right path. Because of this experience, I know more about what I want for myself and have the confidence to promote my brand.
Redeat Wattero is a current young professional at Patterson Companies and will graduate this year from Highland Park Senior High School.