Students Gain Interest in Banking Careers from WSFS Associates and the Philadelphia Union Foundation’s iAM Project
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By Andrew Davison, VP | Published: October 2023
WSFS Bank hosted a Learn & Explore Workshop at its Wilmington headquarters for more than 30 students from Chester Charter Scholars Academy in collaboration with the Philadelphia Union Foundation’s iAM Project (Inspiration, Aspiration, Mentorship).
The students got an inside look at the banking industry and bank office operation. During the half-day workshop, WSFS Associates from consumer banking, wealth management, and back-office functions shared the variety of roles required to run a successful bank and the diverse career journeys they each took to get there.
This insight into often-winding career paths resonated with – and reassured -- the young men and women deciding what to pursue after high school.
Chester Charter Scholars Academy Joan K. Richards Head of School and CEO Akosua Watts called the experience inspiring and invaluable to the students’ growth and development.
“It has ignited their passion for learning and exploring new horizons, and we are confident that the knowledge they gained today will positively influence their future career choices,” Watts said.
For Paul Howard, Executive Director, Philadelphia Union Foundation, exposing students to these real-life examples are exactly the goal of the Learn & Explore workshops and the iAM Project, which connects students with a network of inspirational speakers, mentors, universities and internships — all designed to help the students maximize their personal, academic and professional potential.
“We want to help our iAM Project Scholars understand the breadth of careers and jobs that are available, and that career journeys are often not a straight path,” said Howard. “When the students connect with people who are willing to share how they got to where they are, including the bumps along the way and how they overcame challenges, it inspires our students as they think about their own futures.”
The benefits of community partnerships like this flow both ways. “It’s always rewarding getting to share my story and knowledge that I’ve learned over the years working at WSFS,” said WSFS systems engineer, Aundre Chambers, one of the workshop’s presenters.
“It was a pleasure hosting the students from the Chester Charter Scholars Academy,” said Justin Dunn, SVP, Chief Marketing Officer, WSFS Bank. “We hope that sharing our stories shows the students that there are many paths ahead of them. The workshop was a great example of WSFS’ mission in action. We look forward to finding ways to continue to partner with the Philadelphia Union Foundation to make a difference for these kids.”
This program was part of the ongoing community partnership between WSFS Bank and the Philadelphia Union. Previously, WSFS served as the presenting sponsor of the Union’s annual Backpack Carnival, supported their Women’s Month initiatives, and organized volunteers for “We Stand for Service Day” and a Juneteenth Celebration and Day of Service.
About the Author
Andrew Davison is Vice President, Internal Communications Manager at WSFS Bank. He has over 10 years of writing and corporate communications experience across diverse industries and organizations.