“I sent my resume, but I didn’t get any response. So I came here,” Sandra told the manager of the grocery store where she applied to work during her summer vacation.
Sandra was raised by a single mother, who took care of her as best she could. Unfortunately, they did not have enough savings for the 14-year-old’s future, especially because she wanted to study medicine. So Sandra decided to send her resume to several companies in hopes of working multiple jobs and earning as much money as possible.
Usually, her mother would not allow her to work during the school year because she wanted Sandra to focus on her studies and the few extracurricular activities she could get into.
But Sandra insisted and sent out several applications for jobs. However, this grocery store was the best option. It was close to her home, in a Cincinnati neighborhood, and her mother wouldn’t worry much about her knowing she was there.
“I’m sorry, child. We’re not hiring right now,” Principal Cleaver said, shaking her head.
“Please, I’ll do anything. I can work part-time or full-time, and I can do anything, including the things other people don’t want to do. I’m also pretty strong. I know I look skinny, but I can carry boxes like a man. When my mom buys groceries for the month, we carry them to our apartment in one trip,” Sandra explained excitedly.
Sandra explained that she wanted to save money for medical school, and the director finally nodded, pursing her lips.
“You know what? Can you start work today?” the director asked.
Sandra, all excited, almost hurt her neck as she nodded vigorously. Mrs. Cleaver took her to the back and gave her a vest and a broom.
Her first assignment was to sweep outside because the dirt and leaves had accumulated too much. Sandra did this without complaint. Cleaver then asked her to clean the customer and employee restrooms, which was a more difficult task. But the teenager said she wouldn’t complain and kept her word.
Eventually, Sandra began to inherit all the dirty, heavy tasks that the other employees hated. Some even took the opportunity to ask her for help when they didn’t necessarily need it. But Sandra was happy to help everyone, no matter how grueling the task.
In a world where teenagers her age want to be Internet stars, it was nice to see one of them appreciate honest, hard work.
Little did Sandra know that Ms. Cleaver had spoken to her superiors, who in turn had informed their bosses, and eventually the store owner had found out about her and decided to call her.
“Hello?” Sandra answered her cell phone. She was on break at work, so it was allowed.
“Is this Sandra, who works at the market?” a male voice asked.
“Well, my name is Ronald, and I own this store,” the man revealed, but Sandra didn’t believe him.
“Yes, that’s right. The owner of this store – this big chain – calls me, a mere employee. Ha!” she laughed sarcastically.
“You better start believing it, girl. Because Mrs. Cleaver and her bosses have brought you to my attention, and you know what I appreciate most in the world?” Ronald asked.
“I don’t know. The good things?”
“Well, yes, that too. But you can only get good business from hard-working people like you. These days, young teenagers don’t want to do the dirty work, and I hear your dream is to go to medical school. So I invite you to apply for the scholarship from my foundation. Normally, we only take seniors, and I know you’re only 14. But this is the kind of reward you get for hard work,” he added.
“Wait, are you serious? You’re Mr. Callahan? The millionaire?”
“Yes, I already said that, girl. I’ll send you the details of the scholarship application soon, and good luck!” he said before hanging up.
Sandra was shocked. She went to Mrs. Cleaver to confirm that it was the owner, and she nodded.
“I can help you with the application,” she also offered.
With the help of Mrs. Cleaver and her mother, Sandra applied, using all of her school reports, extracurricular activities, and hard work at the store to pad her resume. She submitted her application hoping for a positive outcome.
After a few months, there was no response and Sandra figured nothing would happen.
Her mother had agreed that she would work part-time during the school year, specifically in the afternoons, to continue building her college fund. But one day in November, the long-awaited call came. She received a $250,000 scholarship, which was more than enough for medical school and eventually a PhD.
All because of her hard work.