West Columbia, SC 09/22/2021 As the job developer for Lexington Two Schools, Susie Day presents students to businesses. Her effort is to find employment for the students after high school.
The students she works with are high school juniors and seniors in the Student Employability Training (SET) program. It’s a non-diploma program that provides community-based work or volunteer experience. In some cases, it has led to permanent job placement. “Our job is to show businesses that these students are very capable,” Day said.
Alberto and Ruben Quintana, who are twins, are products of the job developer program at Airport High School. They have been working for Williams Auto-Truck Repair in West Columbia for three years. “They do an excellent job,” said Marvin Williams, owner. “They are the best employees. They work hard and do great work. They are on time. They stay late and they don’t miss work.”
Williams also said he has total trust in the Quintana twins. He has given them a key to his shop. “They are responsible and trustworthy,” he said.
Alberto and Ruben were still in high school when they started working for Williams. Day said the two had an interest in auto repair and took auto tech classes at the Lexington Two Innovation Center.
“They are allowed to leave school and go to a job for half of the day when they are seniors,” she said. “And they get paid for the work.”
Wlliams said the two have been a blessing. “I’ve struggled to find good help, but (Alberto and Ruben) know what they are doing,” he said. “I never have to worry about their work.”
He also said the two listen when he is teaching them and respond well. And they are learning. Williams is an AC-Delco dealer and he is offering the company’s on-line training to Alberto and Ruben to make them even better mechanics. Day said she is thankful that Williams gave the twins an opportunity.
“Lexington Two is currently partnering with 45 area businesses as part of the training program, which is funded through grants, Day said, “giving district students and businesses the opportunity to work together.” She also said businesses like Williams Auto Repair are critical to the program. “We need businesses to partner with us to help these students succeed. It’s a great thing for the businesses, as well. They get to try out these employees at no risk and the district covers their workman’s comp insurance.”