A Bend High student’s success story
Liam Stidd has always loved lending a hand to others, especially elderly people. He’s spent many years with his grandmother, helping her clean and take care of her home. Now he’s found a way to help others and to make life easier for elderly people through his job at Aspen Ridge Retirement in Bend.
Stidd began working in the kitchen at Aspen Ridge Retirement as a dishwasher in October 2018. The fast-paced job fits him well–he’s always moving and there are always more ways to help in the kitchen. While he mainly stays in his work area, he enjoys occasionally helping the residents, and likes the idea that he’s making their lives better.
“I’m passionate about what I do, and when people train me right, I’ll do the job right,” stated Stidd. He also noted that he’s been complimented by other staff, who have noticed that the dishpit runs more efficiently when he is working.
Learning to solve problems on the job
As with any new job, Stidd experienced some challenges to overcome. Soon after his training began, a misunderstanding between Stidd and his trainer could have brought this new opportunity to an end. Instead, Stidd found help in working out the problem.
Desiree Barry, a Youth Transition Specialist at Bend Senior High School, connected Stidd with a job coach. Together they outlined a detailed routine for Stidd to follow during his shifts, from start to finish. Since then, Stidd has built onto that routine, and improved the dishwashing process at Aspen Ridge. He now helps train new employees to follow the dishwashing procedures, and takes pride in keeping his part of the kitchen spotless, sanitized and efficient.
His job rewards him in ways beyond his paycheck; he also enjoys knowing that he’s helping make the residents’ lives better, and he gets the satisfaction of a job well done.
“Everything we do at Aspen Ridge is for the people who live there. I’ll always stop what I’m doing to help someone out.”
Stidd will graduate this year from Bend High, and he’s looking forward to continuing his work at Aspen Ridge. Learning sous-chef skills may be down the road for him, but he’s taking it one day at a time and making the most of where he is at, right now.