Avondale teenager shares success story going from intern to manager
AVONDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- Today is National Intern Day, and an Avondale teenager is sharing his success story from interning to managing, all thanks to a Valley nonprofit. Just three years ago, Francisco Rojas was interning at Jiffy Lube, and now he’s about to manage a store.
The 19-year-old who used to play car video games now knows his way around a garage, working as a team with his fellow grease monkeys and speaking with customers about repairs. However, that wasn’t always the case for the young husband and father-to-be. He knew next to nothing about the automotive repair industry and preferred to stay quiet.
“I was pretty antisocial, I didn’t like talking to people,” said Rojas. “Before I was shy, I couldn’t talk to anybody.”
Rojas attended the Boys and Girls Club AZYouthForce Academy when he was just 16 years old, where he learned skills for a career in a 30-hour class. It also connected him with this internship at Jiffy Lube, one of the many companies teens can choose to work for.
“This program is about opportunity and giving those teens that don’t have those opportunities or those mentors and give them the opportunity to explore careers and be sure what they want to do,” said program director Samantha Hansen.
Now, Rojas is using the skills he learned in the program. “It helped me a lot, now I can have conversations with customers,” said Rojas. “Now, I can have a conversation with anybody.”
He also knows how to do the job. The employee who used to be told how to do repairs now tells his coworkers what to do. “It’s funny. I used to be the new hire messing up, but now I get to tell other kids how to do things and what to do,” said Rojas. He is a success story, from intern to manager; soon enough, he’ll run a Jiffy Lube.
Now he’s hoping his journey will send a positive message to other Valley teenagers. “I never thought I’d be here, be a manager and have my own store. I never thought about that, now I’m living it, so there is hope out there. Keep going; don’t let anyone turn you down.”
For more information on AZYouthForce, click/tap here.
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