Waterford.org Employees Answer the Question, “Why Waterford?”

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Employees at Waterford.org work every day towards a central goal of helping kids learn how to read. This underlying mission is what helps drive the organization forward to improve early literacy for students. Literacy is the great equalizer for children, and Waterford understands that closing literacy gaps sets students up for greater success in the future.

Waterford employees have the opportunity to be mentored by and learn from others in the company. The best way to improve as an organization is to listen to every idea and implement those that can better help students. Waterford employees are excited to be at the forefront of early literacy and are passionate about sharing this excitement with coworkers.

This video tells the stories of Waterford employees who share a passion for early education. Everything that Waterford employees do centralizes around helping teachers and students succeed in the classroom, at home, and in their educational goals.

Full Transcript

Benjamin Heuston (President & CEO, Waterford): I’m at Waterford and why I’m at Waterford is I believe that that’s how I can have the greatest impact for children and do so at a scale that’s meaningful and overcomes that time barrier.

Anne Brown (VP of Business Development, Waterford): I think the reason anybody would want to be at Waterford is because what we’re doing everyday is the right thing for children. It’s a great thing to be able to say every day I’m focused on helping children learn to read. Reading is equity, reading is the difference in what a child’s life is going to look like later.

Brooke Husey (Event and Intern Manager, Waterford UPSTART): That inspiration was motivating to me and that’s what gave me the motivation and that’s what made me love my job and that was one of the moments where I really thought, I really want to be here and this is somewhere where I really want to work. I mean a company that will go to those lengths for just one child. That’s amazing.

Andy Myers (COO, Waterford): And then in the schools, I love to see the kids using the software, I’ve seen the impact for my own kids. I love to see the impact for other children too. I know that it works but I also love equally as much the opportunity to see employees grow. I’ve always enjoyed the interactions with other employees. We’re in this mission together and we’re solving problems everyday that help us be more successful.

Claudia Jimenez (Refugee Supervisor and Pilot Team Lead, Waterford): I went to a training. It was a parent training that I just fell in love of the mission. The trainers that did that training on that day I remember perfectly that I was like, he is wonderful, and I would like to be part of this wonderful program. I am very grateful for Waterford for the opportunity and to be part of this project and company.

Dan Walker (School Relations Director, Waterford): I love the smallness of it. I love that all of our C-Suite individuals are just down the hall from me. I can walk into their office and ask them questions. It’s a great opportunity to be mentored by them, where in I think a bigger company I just wouldn’t have that opportunity.

Nicole Plumb (Intern, Waterford UPSTART): I just think it’s a really positive way and I love the mission of providing education to children and especially using technology to do that and the UPSTART program and my eventual career goals just really coincide and so I think Waterford was a good way to see that education is a good equalizer.

John David Hernandez Culas (Intern, Wateford UPSTART): I also really enjoy working with the families with the kids getting to watch them how excited they get at the different events that we do and watching the families and how excited they are as well to be using the program and to get to have that experience.

Benjamin Heuston: In order to work for a non-profit, you have to have courage. It requires your A-game every day. It’s not enough to come in and say, “we had a great quarter, isn’t that fantastic?” So if you’re in business, that means you need to make money. Are you a successful businessman? If so means you make money and therefore you’re good. That’s a very simple thing to do. Nonprofits need to do that, but they need to do it while achieving the mission. So to work in a non-profit you have to understand and be willing to bring your soul, your heart, your mind, all of your energy and pour it in.

Dan Walker: The ability for Waterford to help children and me to be a part of that is a huge selling point for me and why I love working at this company. It’s something I love to be able to tell the people that ask me, “what do you do for work?” Being able to tell them I help children learn to read is, it’s almost nothing better.

Todd Stevenson (Executive VP for School Partnerships, Waterford): And at the end of the day, everything we do from sales, to professional services, to customer success, it’s all about what happens in the classroom with those students. Can we help those students learn and put them on a path to success? And just our non-profit mission and values just backs that up.

Andy Myers: And I look forward to the day when Waterford is known as an organization that has great results in helping students reach their full potential starting at an early age and that parents can use it at home, children can use it at school. State legislators look for a way to make it available to every student. If we have something that works and we’ve proven that it’s effective, my hope is that everyone knows about it and it’s not something that people have to find or not be aware of because we haven’t been able to get the word out.

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