• January 18, 2021

GOOD NEWS: Student learns management skills in classroom, on the job - Odessa American: Good News

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GOOD NEWS: Student learns management skills in classroom, on the job

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Posted: Wednesday, January 6, 2021 3:00 am

MIDLAND Less than a year ago, after just 6 months working at the Subway sandwich shop at 2005 W. Dickinson Blvd. in Fort Stockton, 18-year-old Edgar Tavarez received a promotion to shift manager. The 2020 Fort Stockton High School graduate attributes one reason for his on-the-job success to his Midland College business management classes.

“I signed up for dual enrollment courses in high school, and a business class was one of the options,” Tavarez explained. “I had never been all that interested in business, but the schedule was convenient, so I thought to myself, ‘why not give it a shot.’”

Tavarez said that he immediately enjoyed the class and the instructor Anita Shellenberger.

“Ms. Shellenberger wasn’t just a teacher—she really explained things and wanted to help us,” he said. “When we covered business ownership and entrepreneurship, I became very interested. The class inspired me to take more business management classes. My goal is to have my own business one day. I really like the idea of building a business from scratch—something where I can be in control of my own destiny.”

Tavarez took additional business and management classes at the Midland College Williams Regional Technical Training Center (WRTTC) in Fort Stockton, and by the time he graduated from high school this past May, he received a certificate in Business Management from Midland College.

Tavarez is sticking with his studies at the WRTTC and is working toward an associate degree in Business Management. He also continues to manage the 3:00-9:00 p.m. shift at the Subway working 25-35 hours each week.

“I’m able to apply a great deal of what I am learning to my responsibilities at Subway,” Tavarez said. “My classes have helped me deal with people and have given me organizational skills.”

Tavarez noted that recently due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the decline in the economy, Subway had to cut hours for some of the workers. It was his responsibility to tell the employees in his shift.

“That was tough,” Tavarez said. “I relied on some of the principles that Ms. Shellenberger had explained in my classes about being transparent and explaining the situation. I hated doing it, but I realize that it’s something a manager has to do occasionally.”

Tavarez is the son of Olga and Arnaldo Tavarez. He has two siblings—an older sister, also named Olga, who is 20; and a younger brother named Diego, who is 8. Edgar Tavarez and his sister Olga are the first people in their family to attend college. Olga is attending The Art Institute of Austin and majoring in Graphic Design.

“Currently, because of the pandemic, my sister is staying at home and taking online courses,” Tavarez said. “It’s nice having the whole family together again.”

Tavarez is very close to his family. In fact, he stated that when he does start his own business, he wants to stay in the West Texas region so that he can be near his family. His father Arnaldo works in the oil and gas industry.

In his spare time, Tavarez enjoys watching football. His favorite team is the Dallas Cowboys. He also plays the saxophone—a talent he learned as a member of the Fort Stockton High School Band.

Odessa, TX

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