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Mentorship program at Churchill Downs helps JCPS students learn job skills

Mentors from Big Brothers Big Big Sisters of Kentucky want to ensure that students have what it takes to succeed.
Published: Mar. 16, 2022 at 1:32 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - When it comes to the business of running a business, there are few places in Louisville that can compete with Churchill Downs, making it an ideal location for students to learn about the subject.

On Wednesday, Southern High School students had the opportunity to leave the classroom and head to the track to learn real-life business skills; the students were brought there as part of a job skills mentorship program by Big Brothers Big Big Sisters of Kentucky. There, they learned how to create a resume, how to grow interview skills, and how to fill out job applications.

Darcy Diaz, a junior at Southern, said she hopes to graduate high school early. She eventually wants to start her own business, but she said she knows she needs the right skills to do so.

“I want to own my own business,” Diaz said. “I want to have my own store and have my own products made by me.”

Erica Gansbauer, Diaz’s mentor, said she believes she has some wisdom to pass on to Diaz.

“I still kind of have that feeling of what is to to be young and be in business,” Gansbauer said, “so I feel like we can relate.”

Whatever the next step is, whether it’s college or specialized skills training, the mentors want to ensure that students have what it takes to succeed.

According to Gansbauer, Diaz “absolutely” has what it takes to accomplish her goals.

“Her personality is really great,” Gansbauer said, “and for business, that’s a super asset to have.”

Overall, the students said they have learned a lot from the mentorship program and can see themselves applying what they have learned in the future.

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