Forty-two 7th & 8th grade Midtown boys from across Chicago chose to spend their Columbus Day downtown at Tyson Foods, Inc. (formerly Hillshire Brands*) learning about product innovation, brand management, interview skills, and supply chain for an interactive Corporate Community Day.
Fifteen Tyson employees moderated the sessions throughout the day. Suneet Lad, Cynthia Fung, Claire Parkinson and Sergio Uribe, a former Midtown tutor, helped coordinate the field trip under the leadership of Christine Fumi-Fiamawle, head of the Multi-Cultural Business Resource Group. All were impressed by the turnout of Midtown students on a day off from school. Christine commented, "The students are engaged, polite & positive and we have enjoyed having them here as part of National Hispanic Heritage Month-this is a great age group to work with." Sergio added, "Everyone presenting has been so impressed by the students' participation and questions."
Why would so many students choose to go on a corporate field trip on their day off? Brian Parker, Midtown Program Director offered, "They have fun at Midtown. They know that any field trip we take them on will be educational, and they enjoy being together." He also added, "This has been the most comprehensive and in-depth career day that the students have attended since I can remember. The experience was truly worthwhile!"
David, a 7th grader at Unity Junior High, enjoyed the mock interview session presented by Claire Parkinson and Tyson's HR department. "I didn't realize how many different groups of people work to make a business successful. Today helped me look ahead. In the future if I wanted to work somewhere like Hillshire, what would I need to do? I learned a lot today that answers that question."
The students ended the day brainstorming with Tyson employee Cynthia Fung the next big idea for Tyson breakfast products. Who knows, maybe we'll see a Midtown inspired breakfast item on our shelves next year.
*Tyson Foods completed its acquisition of Hillshire Brands in August 2014.