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Three individuals from Chapel Haven have been hired to work at the new Stop & Shop supermarket on Whalley Avenue in the Dwight neighborhood of New Haven.

Seth L. and Shane S., both second-year students in the REACH program, have obtained part-time jobs and Andrew Lorentz, a second-year student in the ASAT program has been hired full-time. Congratulations to all 3!

Matt Tietjen, supervisor of the REACH program, was instrumental in helping the three individuals get hired. The students filled out job applications with the help of Chapel Haven and sent them in, and then attended a hiring fair at the new Stop & Shop. Little did they know that they would have a lot of company when they went to the jobs fair.

“There were hundreds of people lined up outside of the store,” Matt noted. “The students signed in and then we just came back here” with an assumption that it would be tough to get a job based on the massive turnout. But Matt noted, “Seth got a call and went down the next day for an interview and got the job” and the other job offers followed.

“We later learned that there were 2,600 applicants vying for 140 positions,” Matt said.

Matt credits Ann Demchak, a manager at Stop & Shop, for her willingness to hire Chapel Haven clients. “Ann is so committed to making it work for our students. I was impressed that they have 140 new employees and she still is able to look at our students and find something that will fit for them.”

Stop & Shop has a tradition of hiring Chapel Haven clients. Currently, a number of Chapel Haven community members work at the Stop & Shop in the Amity section of New Haven and have maintained an enviable work record.

Helping students become job-ready is part of both the REACH and ASAT programs, especially an emphasis through work internships on learning the soft skills necessary for employment success. “The students all learn so many skills in the residence as part of the program. They’ve filled in the last piece of the puzzle by getting jobs. They can now be independent,” Matt noted.