Posted March 11, 2020
A place with foosball tables, ping pong, and a two story slide doesn’t exactly seem like work, but for Denver Online High School senior, Destynee Martinez, this is the location of her job at Home Advisor.
She said, “If I was a homeowner, and I needed a service, like plumbing, roofing, anything like that, electricity, Home Advisor is just gathering all of the information on different services, contractors, business, and telling me who would be best for me based off of reviews, prices, for a customer.”
She secured this apprenticeship through Denver Public Schools’ CareerConnect and CareerWise Programs.
“My job is really to just look at our current version of a certain software we use to kind of have everything behind the scenes running smoothly. It’s called ticketing,” she expressed. “It’s used a lot in a lot of different areas. And just see if everything is ready to go for the next version of it. It’s just testing different aspects, seeing if anything went wrong, or if there’s anywhere we can improve on, anything we feel like we missed out on.”
She not only receives high school credit for her work, she also gets paid while gaining valuable experience and connections.
“Usually at any fast food or entry level job where they are not requiring two years of experience just so you can work there to go into somewhere else, you work around them and you do everything for them,” she said. “An apprenticeship, you’re kind of doing everything for yourself. Not in a way that you’re doing all the work for yourself, but any way that it can benefit you, they will help you out.”
In addition to her work at Home Advisor, she is also working with Young Invincibles, a job that started as an internship through DPS Launch Internship Program. Destynee helps advocate for policies surrounding economic security within health care, higher education, and jobs, for Colorado young adults and families. One of her most rewarding activities is talking with state legislators.
“They genuinely want to hear what you have to say. If you say it’s a problem, they are going to listen,” she described. “There’s a really good feeling behind going through a meeting, and they kind of just seem maybe disconnected or not interested the whole time. At the very end they say, ?I love this, and I would love to support it.’ You’re just like, ?Yes! Oh my God.'”
Whether it’s a three year apprenticeship program or a semester long internship that turns into a job, Destynee reminds us of the value that career exploration affords students. She said, “I absolutely think that anyone should try it out, because any experience is really good. It’s good experience. It’s kind of the only way to figure out if you want to pursue something. And instead of changing your degree, what five years in, you can just know earlier on that you want to do something.”