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Massachusetts high school's work-study program provides valuable real world experience

Work-study program helping students learn and grow in a corporate environment
Work-study program helping students learn and grow in a corporate environment 02:21

BOSTON – A work-study program at a Massachusetts school is helping high school students learn and grow in the corporate environment.

The program is being run at Cristo Rey Boston High School in Dorchester. The idea is that everybody in the community is pulling on the same rope to uplift young adults.

"Maybe they are working in an architectural firm, they're in a hospital, they are in a community center, they're in a school. They are seeing all the opportunities," said Rosemary Powers, president of Cristo Rey Boston High School. "Really what it does for kids who haven't had opportunities to see different kinds of careers, the first thing it does is open up their world."

One of the companies that's been involved since the beginning is BOND Building Construction. Brenda Aviles is a senior at Cristo Rey and she's been working at the company for three years.

"Coming here I feel that I have been able to grow and adapt to this work setting," Aviles said.

Frank Hayes, president of BOND Building Construction, said it's been exciting to see the development of Aviles and other students.

"She's just grown into an incredibly successful young lady, it's been awesome. We have had success stories like that. Just to see what she is going to do with her career going forward is super exciting," Hayes said.

Aviles works in the estimating department and alongside her manager Barbara Connolly, she's gaining real work experience and thriving.

"It's not busy work, it's not going to make copies," Connolly said. "It's like, do some take off on this job and then we use it in our estimates and that's really important. I feel it's important for them to feel part of the team."

Aviles said her experience at the company has been extremely valuable.

"I feel like I was very happy to take this opportunity because I have grown so much. I have grown as a person and I have grown with experience in a professional environment," Aviles said. 

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