“If I was ever being lazy my dad and brother would get after me until I did my job correctly the first time,” says Kyle Rushold, recent graduate of Campion Academy and the school’s first student to get his own parking spot.
The work ethic instilled by his family paid off when he started working for the maintenance department at Campion after his sophomore year. When Kyle started his senior year, Plant Services Director Glenn O’Halloran hired Kyle to be the student assistant for Plant Services, a position that requires him to supervise up to six students on the morning work crew.
“When you work, you are rewarded by success—usually with money,” explains Glenn O’Halloran. Kyle did get paid a slightly higher wage, but the parking spot was part perk, part necessity since Kyle’s position would often make him late for class or chapel.
Kyle claims he doesn’t know why he got his own parking spot, remaining humble about his responsibility. “I guess Mr. O’Halloran and Principal Reeder had the confidence in me for this position, which doesn't really qualify me but gave me the confidence I needed for it.”
Paired with strong academics and spiritual emphasis is Campion Academy’s student employment program.
A long-time tradition of boarding academies, student employment fits in with Ellen White’s counsel to teach students a work ethic and practical knowledge along with theoretical. About 95% of Campion students work for the school or off-campus at Voice of Prophecy, HMS elementary school, a greenhouse, vet clinic, assisted living nursing home, paleo snack kitchen, or as literature evangelists, to name a few.
O’Halloran hopes his student workers graduate with the skills necessary to walk on to their college campus and get a job with plant services. At least three students in the last two years have gotten such jobs at Union College. “They’re not only becoming great students at Campion Academy, but great workers, too,” says O’Halloran.
“I am learning so much while working at Campion,” says Kyle, “from learning how to use new equipment to even learning how to drive a bus. The most important, though, is how to deal correctly with everyday problems and people. It is also teaching me a lot more of how the real world works.”
Jenny Sigler teaches English at Campion Academy