Students can learn valuable work skills working in a local grocery

By Barry H. Hendrix

“Being on time is important,” said Shannon Eskridge, assistant manager of Super Foods in Thomasville.

The Thomasville City Schools District continues to promote an “Attendance Counts” initiative. School officials are making a concerted effort to promote good attendance in school, which will translate to better work habits in school and after high school graduation.

Eskridge recently spoke to Terry Norton, attendance supervisor for the school system.

It is important to prepare for work life after graduation, Eskridge said. “I’ve been in the grocery business a long time, and it’s been good to me.” A student working at a grocery store can learn valuable work skills and also life skills in interacting with the customers. “You’re going to need a reference one day.”

Part time employees are as important as full time employees at Super Foods. Everyone has a part to play, Eskridge said. It is a family-style atmosphere with Super Foods employees, and regular customers are also treated as family.

Super Foods is also a participant in Thomasville High School’s Work-Based Learning program, where students can take part of the school day to work in an occupation. “I don’t think the work-based program could survive without employers like you,” Norton told Eskridge. “We need them,” Eskridge said of the work-based students. “We’ve got some pretty good kids here. …I treat them like my own.”

He tells students to not look at their part time job at the grocery store as simply something to do until graduation. “Work hard here, and you might be able to move up one day,” Eskridge said. The work itself is important. “This could be your future.”

(Pictured are Shannon Eskridge, assistant manager of Super Foods in Thomasville; and Terry Norton, attendance supervisor with school system.) 

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