Submitted by various contributors
Supporting students’ goals, priorities and definitions of success is a team effort at the North Vancouver School District, as is evidenced by Grady’s recent work experience at the local Canadian Tire.
Patty Archibald, Inclusive WEX Facilitator
Grady came to the Work Experience (WEX) program with a keen interest and experience working on cars. Based on this, I had the opportunity to set up a WEX placement for him in the automotive service shop at the North Vancouver Canadian Tire.
Tasks assigned to Grady included basic care and maintenance of vehicles. When I visited Grady, he was working independently and very focused. Staff at Canadian Tire commented, “After we explain and model a task to Grady, he is able to perform it on his own, allowing him to build his skills.”
Grady shared with me how he loves working on cars in the service shop and finds it very interesting. Hopefully Grady’s training, experience and new skills that he is acquiring from his WEX placement will help him access paid employment as he transitions from secondary school to the workplace.
Grady W., WEX Student
I was excited to start the WEX placement at Canadian Tire. My duties are to shadow/assist a mechanic at Canadian Tire and help him with any jobs he is assigned. The staff are amazing! I am growing and gaining experience in car mechanics. I hope I can continue working in this field after high school.
Damon Edis, WEX Job Coach
Working with Grady during his WEX placement at Canadian Tire was my first WEX job coaching experience. It has been a great fit for me as well as I have an interest in automotive.
The staff at Canadian Tire have been friendly and helpful. Mechanic Aiden has been a fantastic mentor for Grady. Grady is always focused and listening to Aiden's instructions. He takes on any task asked of him and requires no prompting from me.
I feel Aiden really noted Grady's genuine interest and strong desire to learn. Together, they quickly advanced to a variety of tire and other mechanical jobs. My hope is that there may be an opportunity at the end of the WEX placement for Grady to continue with a job at Canadian Tire.
Teresa Brown, Learning Services Teacher
I was very excited for Grady to start his work experience placement at Canadian Tire. The best part was that he was placed in an area of interest: the automotive shop.
Grady's enthusiasm was evident right away, and with the help of Damon, he quickly made good connections with coworkers. It was not long before he started working independently of the job coach.
Grady is proof that the right placement can make a world of difference to a student’s learning experience. In addition, being able to tackle areas of growth in a positive environment is enabling him to mature into this journey of transitioning to adulthood.
I am grateful for the staff at Canadian Tire who have taken him under their wing. My hope is for Grady to continue to foster his interest in this area of work and have access to paid employment.