Introducing April’s Rising Stars!

Congratulations LeeShay and Darius!

Cookie Cart chooses two youth employees each month as our Rising Stars. Our program staff work together to determine which young people are striving to be their best. They look for a positive attitude, mindfulness of adult staff and youth peers, strong attendance to scheduled shifts, and demonstration of initiative and willingness to help others.

What makes LeeShay and Darius stand out? Read questions from an interview with them below or stop by our bakery to meet this month’s Rising Stars!

LeeShay

How long have you worked at Cookie Cart?
I’ve worked at Cookie Cart for about 6 months now. I wanted to work here to gain job experience and to be a part of my community.

What is your favorite thing about working at Cookie Cart?
I like working with volunteers in the bakery. They tell me about their career paths and it’s always interesting to hear how they got their jobs. The most interesting career path was someone from General Mills who was a scientist and worked on food that help hearts function.

Why do you think that we chose you for Rising Star?
I’ve come a long way since I started. I used to come in with an attitude and now I come in with a smile. I say hey to everyone and I’m more outspoken with the volunteers. I’m always pushing myself to do better because I used to get frustrated easily, but now I try my hardest to make it right.

What is the secret to your success?
Showing dignity to every individual that walks in the door because you never know who you’re bumping into and what their story is.

What is your most memorable moment at Cookie Cart?
When we went to General Mills for a workplace visit and got to make our own granola bars. Mine was called the Apple Crunch Wonderbar.

What is your favorite type of cookie?
M&M

Can you share some advice on how to become Rising Star?
Have patience, treat everyone with respect, no matter how hard it gets keep trying because failure only means you’re trying.

What does your bright future look like?
I’m not exactly sure yet. I’m multi-talented: I sing, dance, and rap, but I also want to be a doctor or a lawyer. Right now I’m just trying out everything. I know I want to do something that helps people, but I’m not sure yet. I do want to go to college far away because I was born and raised in Minneapolis and I want to see more.

What are the top three skills you’ve learned at Cookie Cart, or have worked on the most?
Interpersonal skills
Building new relationships with people I don’t know or never would normally have a conversation with
Patience

Darius

How long have you worked at Cookie Cart?
5 months. I wanted to work at Cookie Cart because I knew they did STEP-UP and that it was a teen focused workplace, and I wanted to work with teens my age because it’s more comfortable.

What is your favorite thing about working at Cookie Cart?
My coworkers because they are different and diverse and have their own story to tell which helps you get closer and build better relationships with them.

Why do you think that we chose you for Rising Star?
I feel like I do everything everyone else does, but I guess I do try to get more things done and I try to present myself and stand out. I don’t always notice when I do things better because it’s just a part of me and I think I’m doing what’s right. But I do see that I’m becoming more professional.

What is the secret to your success?
Be yourself. Try not to build walls because you don’t feel comfortable with someone. You should open up because then they will open up to you.

What is your most memorable moment at Cookie Cart?
On my first day we had to build a lot of boxes because it was peak season. The boxes filled a whole wall in the community room.

What is your favorite type of cookie?
M&M

Can you share some advice on how to become Rising Star?
Ask. Always ask. If you don’t, if you’re quiet and closed off, opportunities won’t come your way and you’ll have to search for them.

What does your bright future look like?
I want to go to an HBCU in the South, hopefully Howard in Georgia, to study music or therapy, or both. I’m in choir at school and really enjoy singing. I’m interested in therapy because I was on some student panels talking to other students about high school and that, along with my school therapist, inspired me to maybe pursue it. Talking to other people comes naturally to me, and I’m interested in helping other people because you make connections and it makes you feel good.

What are the top three skills you’ve learned at Cookie Cart, or have worked on the most?
Networking, Teamwork, and Relationship Building

Congratulations on being selected as Rising Stars for the month of April. The leadership team would like to thank you for all your hard work!