Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Ryan Has a Job

“I like it here. I like the people, I make more money, and it’s fun.”
Ryan has a job. He began working at the McDonald’s on October 12, 2007. He can tell you the day because he was excited and nervous, but ready for a new challenge.
AtWork! began serving Ryan when he transitioned from his high school program. He lives in Kent but made the daily commute to AtWork!’s Kenmore and later Bellevue shop for several years. He finished up his career with AtWork! enterprises in its Issaquah facility. Each move was a bit closer to home and another step on his pathway to employment. Now Ryan has a job in the community at McDonald’s and is the best french fry cook in the McDonald’s system.
If you’ve ever visited a busy McDonald’s restaurant over the noon hour you know how fast and furious the employees are working to get food cooked and out to customers. Having someone there to make sure the french fries are always cooked and ready for waiting orders is vital during the hectic noon rush.
Ryan works two to three hours a day keeping up with the french fries. Focusing on just one part of a job helps Ryan be successful. To his co-workers Ryan is more than the french fry cook. They like him. They’re teaching him Spanish. And Ryan is helping them to understand that people with disabilities can contribute and make a difference in the workplace.
“I like it when there is a lot going on. At my group home we sometimes go to plays, go swimming and on the weekend go to the lake house. And I really like coming to work.” Ryan has found his way along the path and it has led to his work place in the community.

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