Churchs Chickens Stride for Success Program

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Jaso becomes first employee to graduate from Church’s Chicken’s Stride for Success program

RAYMONDVILLE — Joann Jaso is the first in the country to take a big step on her company’s career ladder.

This month, Jaso became the first Church’s Chicken employee to graduate from the national restaurant giant’s new Stride for Success program.

With partner Penn Foster College, the company’s program offers its employees a chance to earn their high school diplomas or equivalents.

“It’s amazing,” said Jaso, a mother of two who serves as training general manager at Church’s Raymondville restaurant. “There are no words to explain how gratified I feel.” Raised in Lubbock, Jaso began working for Church’s at the company’s Alice restaurant more than four years ago.

In March, she took her job at the Raymondville restaurant.

Then in August, Jaso began work on her high school diploma.

“It was a challenge, especially being out of school for many years,” Jaso said. “I did a lot of reading. I learned if you want something in life, you have to sacrifice.”

On Nov. 2, Jaso became the program’s first graduate.

“It’s going to open more doors for me,” she said. “As far as moving further with the company, it’s going to help me out a lot. It’s going to further my advancement with the company.” Church’s Chief Executive Officer Jim Hyatt and Chief Human Resources Officer Ed Brett came up with the idea for the company’s Stride for Success program.

“Costs and scheduling time away from work can present insurmountable obstacles for many who want a high school diploma. By taking care of 100 percent of the cost associated with the program and by developing curriculum that can be accomplished online at our employees’ convenience, those burdens are lessened considerably,” Brett said.

“We’re immensely proud of Joann for being the first to complete the program. She clearly has a desire to grow and learn and as long as our team members have that mindset, we’re committed to doing everything possible to assist them in becoming successful.”

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