By John Olajide
No one succeeds on their own.
That’s why when I was given the opportunity to be “Principal for a Day” at Kennedy-Curry Middle School more than three years ago, I took it without hesitation.
By the end of that demanding day, after learning what it takes to run a school in Southern Dallas with an enrollment of about 800 students, I came away with a profound respect for the tremendous responsibilities shouldered by principals every day.
I was so inspired that I agreed to literally open the doors of Axxess to these students, so they could get a firsthand look at what can be possible in their futures – and our doors have remained open.
Every year, we invite dozens of the school’s students into our North Dallas office, where they can get hands-on experience in various fields and test their skills as engineers, app developers, healthcare professionals, graphic designers, human resource professionals and more. Our team members talk with students about what courses they took, their career journey and what they did to eventually earn a place at Axxess.
Our company is an especially good place for students to visit because they are exposed to professionals in healthcare, computing, human resources, law, engineering, marketing, public relations, finance and more. This is so much better than the traditional career day, where adults just tell students about where they work – the students get to experience the work it firsthand.
More importantly, students get to see how our employees work and play as a team. They see who we are – a diverse group of people just like them, who get excited about doing great things. Visiting our office gives students something to aspire to beyond the classroom. In fact, more than a few Kennedy-Curry Middle School students have told us that the time they spent at Axxess made them think differently about their schoolwork and that they now take it more seriously.
You might be wondering what Axxess gets out of this. In short, our employees get to be an inspiration to others. We get to spend time with a lot of students who just need a chance, and I have no doubt they will be the future leaders of tomorrow. Playing a role in inspiring them to dream big makes what we do every year seem that much more important.
I encourage all business and community leaders to take part in the Dallas Regional Chamber’s Principal for a Day program.
John Olajide is President and CEO of Axxess, the fastest growing home healthcare technology company, which has partnered with DISD’s Kennedy-Curry Middle School since fall 2014. Enrollment for the DRC’s Principal for a Day program begins Wednesday, August 9. If you are interested in participating, please contact email@example.com.
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