More than 100 students from area schools were submerged into Pratt businesses to see and experience actual job experience on October 23. We had two of the best at the Pratt Tribune.
Disability Mentoring Day last Tuesday in Pratt was so much fun. Only I have no idea why they have the name disability in the title because, from what I saw and heard, there were few or none in the whole 100-plus group of participants that qualified for that label.
I have to admit, when I heard that we were hosting two students for part of the day at the Pratt Tribune, on a Tuesday, I wasn't exactly thrilled. Tuesday's are not really fun days here, be- cause that is day each week that we slam together not one local paper, but two papers for two towns that are outside our usual area of operations - the Kiowa County Signal for Greens- burg and the St. John News for Stafford County. Not that these aren't great places filled with great people, but truth be told, it isn't easy writing, designing and putting together two 12-page papers in one day, a task that used to take two full-time editors an entire week for each paper. It's exhausting.
Add to that continued work on the Pratt Tribune in the form of planning, posting online informa- tion and the general, con- tinuous phone, email and walk-in traffic, it makes for a very full day. And we were to host two high school students and show them what we do as part of mentoring day, on a Tuesday.
From the moment they walked in the door, how- ever, we knew, at the Pratt Tribune, that mentoring day was going to be alright. In fact, it turned out to be much more than alright, as it quickly became apparent that our "mentees" were fully capable of becoming the "mentors" in our office.
Without naming names, let me just say, that the youth in our midst were very smart, and very capable of learning quickly how to use technology to make things easier in the newspaper and digital world.
From setting up an unused iPad to learning on-line posting skills to taking needed pictures, our mentees were a godsend to the Pratt Tribune on Tues- day.
It was so much fun to have some enthusiasm in our midst that I can honestly say, I wish every day was mentoring day at the Pratt Tribune. I am wondering if we were just the lucky ones and got the best kids, or did other businesses in town have the same great experience we did. Our Kansas kids are smart, they want to learn, they want to work, at least the ones we met on Disabilty Mentoring Day were.
I can't wait until next year to do this all again. The best part was the feeling I have that we will seeing more of the mentees that came to our door on Tuesday. It takes interest, respect, a bit of talent and a willingness to learn to make it in today's business world, and I am glad to say we saw plenty of that on Tuesday. I don't know where the "dis" came into the equation, but I am thinking it should be called "Ability Mentoring Day," because that is what it really was, at our office anyway.