This summer 30 area students are helping out at local businesses in Dodge County to gain valuable life-long independent skills to better prepare them for jobs after high school graduation and beyond.
PS Seasoning, located in Iron Ridge, has teamed up with Green Valley Enterprises, located in Beaver Dam, to employ students participating in the Life Academy Summer Program to help out packing kits in Production.
Green Valley is a non-profit organization that helps individuals with special needs by offering training and other work-related services throughout the area.
PS Seasoning became aware of the summer program through Green Valley.
The summer program has been around for 3 years.
“This summer we have students from seven area schools participating,” said Meredith Winning, Employment and Outreach Coordinator at Green Valley Enterprises. “The schools include Mayville, Lomira, Horicon, Beaver Dam High School and Middle School, Cambria Friesland and Randolph.”
According to Winning, students must be at least 15 years of age and can participate in the program until they turn 21. The program is funded fully through Wisconsin’s Division of Vocational Rehabilitation.
The Life Academy Summer Program began on Monday, June 4 and will end on Friday, Aug. 24 just in time for the new school year to begin.
Winning stated that students are selected to participate in the program by their special education teachers at school who felt selected individuals would be strong candidates and benefit from the summer program.
Each week there is a new group of high school students, typically five to six students, along with a job coach who come to work at PS.
The team is shown quality videos and one-on-one training with PS Seasoning’s Quality Assurance department before they are set up at a station on the production floor.
The training is modified for each student to learn in a way they understand.
Once the training is complete a PS employee works closely with the group to ensure projects are ready for them to tackle.
PS is thankful for all the help this summer as they are supporting the rapid growth of PS and helping stay ahead of incoming kit orders during this busy time.
“We believe in providing opportunities of accomplishment and hope that each of the clients we work with gain the confidence and self-awareness of their own unique abilities,” said Joe Hanni, president of PS Seasoning.