Erin Walsh, M.A., adolescent brain development expert, spoke to 80 Cristo Rey Jesuit Corporate Work-Study Program (CWSP) sponsors at the new Hilcorp building in downtown Houston during a sponsor luncheon. Interacting with the crowd, Walsh provided concrete strategies to effectively engage CWSP students in the workplace, as well as practical advice for supervising teens.
“Connecting is the number one thing a supervisor can do to engage a teenager,” Walsh said. “The teen brain has an incredible capacity to grow. Your role in their lives can make a huge difference.”
Walsh recommended integrating students into the office culture and office traditions; be sure to use the student’s first name as often as possible when speaking to them, shake their hand and learn the student’s “spark,” or what excites them and then talk to them about it.
An attendee at the luncheon, Jesse Luna, BP information and data technologist, said that the current CWSP student assigned to work with him is senior Jason Rodriguez, who is “great. I’ve been working with students for four years. I was a little tentative about working with teenagers, but the program has helped me tremendously by reducing my workload.”
If interested in becoming a sponsor, please contact Jana Ames at firstname.lastname@example.org.