"To see the kids interacting with the dogs like this, it's so cool," Desilets said, watching from outside the kennel.
Prussel, a senior at Nashua High School South, is spending her summer working at the Riverside Canine Center; she had spent the past few minutes cleaning out one of the kennels behind the facility. Cleaning up after the dogs is only one component of the job, however. Prussel and two other teens working at the center this summer also groom and bathe the dogs and work on obedience training skills, among other things.
Students received a paycheck for their work, money that is funded through the Workforce Investment Act.
"I want to teach people they can't abuse their animals," he said.
the hose to spray the dog, as it playfully jumped up and down.
"See how I'm holding his back leg firmly," he said. "You want to secure your dog at all times when grooming him."
Prussel works at the center for 15 hours a week, along with South students Sharissa Eaton and Abi Viera Martinez. The students are enrolled in the city's My Turn Nike Caps White program, which over the summer connects students with programs in the area and puts them to work. The students are paid through the program, which is funded by the federal Workforce Investment Act. My Turn works with teens, particularly those from low income families or with disabilities, to give them the education and skills needed to succeed after graduation.
3 students helping care for dogs this summer
Jeff Smith, a career specialist with My Turn, said the teens working at the canine center are among 50 students working this summer through My Turn. In addition to the canine center, students are working at the Boys Girls Club of Greater Nashua, the Nashua Soup Kitchen Shelter, the YMCA, Marguerite's Place and the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. One student is spending the summer working for the Hudson Fire Department.
"We match up the students with their interests so they also get the experience they are looking for," Smith said.
The program lasts for six weeks, which means the students will get 90 hours of experience. All three students said they want to work with animals in some way after high school. Martinez, a junior, wants to be an animal cop and is hoping to get to do a ride along with one of the local animal control police officers.
at the canine center. Smith called Desilets, who was more than happy to give the teens the experience.
Dylan, a Sheltie dog, shook as Desilets ran the brush through his hair. Dylan is a retired performance dog, and Desilets said the animal has developed tumors over his body and in his mouth, which meant extra care was needed. Desilets brushed the dog, then clipped his nails.
And of course, all of the students have their own pets at home. Eaton, a senior, has a dog, three cats, two fish and is planning on buying a ball python.
"We try to get them out there to get a taste of what the work force is like and what it means to earn a living," Smith said.
As his new set of summer employees looked on, Steve Desilets, office manager at Riverside Canine Center, gave a lesson on how to groom a dog properly.
The canine center is a new addition to the list of places the teens are working this summer. Air Jordans Hats
"To be honest, the help is great," Desilets said. "I thought it was a great opportunity for the kids to come in here and learn."
Smith said the idea was raised by some of the students who wanted to work with animals over the summer. Martinez worked at a rescue center for birds last summer and approached Smith about working Nike Cap One Size
Knowing how difficult it can be to get into veterinary programs in college, Desilets said the experience could give the students a good head start. Students are helping out with work at the center, including looking after the 20 to 25 dogs that are kept during the day, part of the center's dog day care program. Last week, Eaton, a senior, filled up a small pool for the dogs to help them cool off. She began to play with one of the dogs, a German shepherd. She used New Era Calgary Flames
Walking out of the kennel with a shovel full of dog poop, Jacqui Prussel had found her dream job.
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