Running Start for Careers alumnus tells his story of success in school and beyond
At his final State of the City address, Mayor Richard J. Berry showcased the achievements of the Running Start for Careers career exploration initiative - and invited Nusenda Credit Union’s employee and recent RSFC graduate Aaron Wadley-Child to share his story of success with more than 400 business and community leaders.
Wadley-Child, 18, is one of 1,240 Albuquerque-area students who have participated in the award-winning program since 2011. Along with 150 other Running Start participants, he chose to attend Nusenda’s Financial Services Career Exploration course, which features learning opportunities with more than a dozen of its senior-level executives from various credit union departments. While in Running Start, students earn concurrent dual credits in high school and post-secondary institutions. Nusenda’s course in particular not only helps students to learn about career pathways in the financial service industry, it also helps them gain personal finance skills to manage their finances - such as creating a budget, making a savings plan, managing credit, and more.
Nusenda has been an instrumental initiative partner, helping to secure program grants, including a $100,000 grant from the U.S. Conference of Mayors and Strada Education Network last month.
“Through my internship, I learned many important and valuable skills that will go with me as I continue my journey through the working world that has only begun – thanks to the Running Start for Careers program and Nusenda Credit Union,” Wadley-Child said.
The Albuquerque native said his most memorable life moments came when starting his high-school career. He attended nex+Gen Academy, an Albuquerque Public Schools magnet school, where he began taking dual-credit classes through Central New Mexico Community College in his freshman year. At the end of his sophomore year, he enrolled in Nusenda’s course, where he said he discovered his affinity for the financial industry.
After completing the course, he received a paid internship with Nusenda’s Business Services commercial lending department. Nusenda’s internship program is designed to not only allow students the opportunity for a paid internship, but also to continue to receive additional high school and college credits as they gain valuable work experience. After completing his time as an intern, Nusenda brought Wadley-Child on board as a part-time employee while he studies business administration at the University of New Mexico.
“Nusenda’s numerous credit-earning opportunities during our internship program help students gain a much-needed running start towards educational success,” said Robin Brule, SVP Community Relations and Special Assistant to the President. “Running Start for Careers is one of several initiatives that Nusenda has thoughtfully cultivated to serve New Mexico’s diverse population and unique needs.”
Wadley-Child is one of 61 paid interns Nusenda has hired since it became a Running Start for Careers partner in the 2013-14 APS school year. Of those interns, 19 now work as employees for the credit union in everything from front-line tellers to marketing analysts, to information technology specialists.
In 2016, Nusenda distributed more than $10.1 million to members and communities statewide in both financial and in-kind support through its Community Rewards program and member dividends. For more information about Nusenda’s philanthropic programs, visit www.nusendafoundation.org.
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