QUINCY, Fla. (WTXL) — In a graduation ceremony that isn't sending these Gadsden County teens to college just yet, but rather the workforce, Gadsden County welcomed their newest members of the workforce at the Carter-Parramore Academy Friday.
17 teenagers received their work certifications during Gadsden County's first Summer Youth Work Program paid training course.
They will go on to work in warehouses, offices, or in Gracie Stephens case, into homes as a home health aid.
"I feel like it's a step towards my lifelong goal," said Stephens.
Gadsden County said they wanted to help get kids real on-the-job training before they get into college or the workforce. This will also provide part-time labor to area businesses during the national labor shortage.
"Now they're going to have to get up, get dressed, get to work on time, make an impression on people and figure out if this is something they really want to get up for and do daily maybe for perhaps the rest of their lives," said Gadsden County Public Information Officer Leslie Steele.
For Shakerria Allen, who also is going to be a home health aid this summer, she'll be helping patients with home care and is thankful for her summer job training.
"I'll be certified, but I'm still learning," said Allen.