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Small Town Girl Returns Home
 It seems like just yesterday. I was packing what seemed like my whole world into the back of my mom’s 2013 Grand Caravan and heading south on I-77, beyond ready to finally see that small town of...
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Small Town Girl Returns Home

Posted on Wednesday, May 17, 2017 - 2:04pm

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 It seems like just yesterday. I was packing what seemed like my whole world into the back of my mom’s 2013 Grand Caravan and heading south on I-77, beyond ready to finally see that small town of mine in the rearview mirror. I had grown up in Wayne County, and loved every corner of it. But with every passing day I could feel the county lines close in on me with more and more force, as if they were begging me to stay as I craved to leave. But on that humid August morning, I finally broke free of what felt like chains around me.  

But after two years of school, and a summer internship with one of the biggest educational publishing companies in New York City, I found myself back in those Wayne County lines, but with an entirely new feeling toward them. Yes, I still had big city dreams. I still wanted to make an impact in the world and most certainly wanted to be successful in my field. But, after spending so much time away from my little corner of the world, I found myself itching to get back to it.  

After a few phone calls, emails, and interviews, I found myself walking into the office of the Orrville Area Chamber of Commerce as their marketing intern for the summer. Although I had grown up in Wayne County, Orrville seemed as unfamiliar to me and my Wooster roots as California.  

My marketing internship would consist of three major parts. The first, of course, was marketing. Whether it be updating some of the Chamber's website pages or creating social media schedules to boost analytic data, there was no such thing as a dull moment, even in the beginning stages of my internship. The second part of my internship would revolve around events. Anything from the Iron Chef Competition to benefit the Wayne County Volunteer Guardianship Association, a hotel grand opening, or an evening of recognition for the powerful and influential women in the area, my office calendar just grew more and more with each passing day. And lastly, networking. Due to my accelerate undergraduate degree program, I would be graduating from college in three years rather than four. As a result of that, my job hunting had become much more prominent in my everyday life. While working for the Chamber of Commerce, it was my responsibility to network with as many local business men and women as possible. With informational interviews and meetings, it was my hope that I would have a better understanding of my degree, and what I wanted to do with that degree, by the end of the summer.  

During the first week of my internship, I barely got the chance to sit down. From one meeting to another, I found myself balancing a variety of different projects, as well as shaking hands with countless local business men and women. By the time Friday came around, my hand was starting to get sore from all of the introductions I had made. But after truly realizing the volume of introductions that had occurred in the first week alone, I quickly realized just how beneficial my summer internship would be to my future career endeavors. If I played everything just right, I would walk away from a summer in Small Town, USA with the Golden Ticket to a successful post-graduate transition.  

Along with the introductions came the meetings. Membership meetings, marketing meetings, publishing meetings, almost every meeting you could ever think of, I was in it. In fact, the first few days of meetings were so busy that I barely sat down at my desk in between them, which was a positive change from my internship in New York where the meetings were too confidential for interns to be a part of. But my favorite part of these meetings, was getting to participate in them. The Chamber, and all of the members of the community within these meetings were curious about what I had to say. They asked my opinion, and I felt as if there was never a wrong one to have, which again, as a college intern, is very comforting and makes the learning process that much more enjoyable.  

Moving into the second week of my internship, the office life seemed to slow down just enough for me to catch my breath. Having worked as a communication intern at a growing publishing company in New York City the summer before, I was more than adapted to a fast-paced work environment. But, taking a minute to smell the roses was never a bad idea. As I began to dive farther into my projects, and really lay the groundwork for the weeks of work ahead, I found myself chomping at the bit for more and more activity.  

Growing up in Wooster, I was no stranger to the slow moving pace of the Midwest. Additionally, my Midwest roots instilled a sense of work ethic in me that was incomparable to any other skill I could ever learn, and I was never afraid to roll up my sleeves and get some dirt under my nails, no matter how many times I wanted to splurge on a manicure. Moving back to my hometown for the summer, I was more than ready to re-establish myself into the Midwest atmosphere that, no matter how many times I tried to convince myself otherwise, I had greatly missed.  

 

Vendors Needed for Maker Mart
Schantz Maker Space will open a Maker Mart, summer 2017 At the Schantz Maker Space we encourage people to learn new technology and combine that with traditional tools and machines to build things. A...
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Vendors Needed for Maker Mart

Posted on Tuesday, April 25, 2017 - 3:25pm

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Schantz Maker Space will open a Maker Mart, summer 2017

At the Schantz Maker Space we encourage people to learn new technology and combine that with traditional tools and machines to build things.

A logical next step is to provide a place for people to sell the products they make.

We envision using the Schantz Organ Company parking lot to open a Maker's Mart on Saturday mornings from Memorial Day to Labor Day.  The Maker's Mart will combine elements of a farmer's market and a craft fair. 

Are you a Maker?  We want you to set up a booth and sell your products.  We are looking for farm produce of all kinds, or homemade products like candles and soaps, woodworking and crafts products of all kinds, as well as new products that come about as a result of working with new technology like 3D Printing.

Contact Vic Schantz at Schantz Maker Space for more information, ph: 330-682-6065; email: v.schantz@schantzorgan.com

It's Off To Work We Go Orrville
Support of Workforce Initiatives has been identified as the top priority for the Orrville Area Chamber of Commerce in 2017.  When a community can’t align the supply of skilled labor with industry...
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It's Off To Work We Go Orrville

Posted on Saturday, April 8, 2017 - 9:33am

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Support of Workforce Initiatives has been identified as the top priority for the Orrville Area Chamber of Commerce in 2017.  When a community can’t align the supply of skilled labor with industry demand, economic growth suffers.

Orrville “works” when business and education work together to address skills-jobs disconnect and tap the abundance of employment opportunities here in the Orrville area.

The Chamber and Heartland Education Community partnered in late 2014 to discuss the area’s shortage of skilled workers.  It’s not an issue of blue collar versus white collar or college versus vocational education.  Rather it’s about finding the right path for the individual and the right employee for the company.

The Orrville Area Workforce Taskforce, an initiative of the Orrville Area Chamber of Commerce in partnership with Heartland Education Community, is composed of four subcommittees: Business and Education Partnership, Workforce Readiness, HR Connections and Orrville Works.

The business and education partnership focuses on providing up-close, hands-on experiences for students and educators with our local manufacturing and healthcare industries. 

There is an abundance of job openings currently posted on www.orrvilleworks.com however, sometimes individuals encounter barriers to securing and maintaining employment.  The Workforce Readiness committee is piloting a program, Strive to Thrive, in partnership with the Orrville Salvation Army to provide individual support and guidance for unemployed and underemployed in the community. 

Soft skills training programs based on “Bring Your A Game to Work” will be offered for high school students and adults at Heartland Point in June.

The HR Connections committee focuses on helping local Human Resource directors connect with each other as well as with the training and resources they need to do their jobs.  It’s a support system for large and small employers recruiting top talent for their company.

The fourth committee coordinates marketing for OrrvilleWorks.com.  This website provides information on local businesses, employee testimonials and listings of current employment opportunities in our area. 

Since January 2017, orrvilleworks.com has featured job postings from 60 different local employers.  New positions are added regularly.  Visit often.  The committee will be populating the site with interesting and relevant content and launching a campaign to drive more people from a larger geographic area to the site in the coming months.

What work will you do?  Check out OrrvilleWorks.com today and get off to work Orrville!