By Bernadette A. Moyer
Every once in a while a really great young person comes along. It might not be that they are doing one thing great, but rather on how they approach life and all the great little things that they do that add to a better life. A better life for all those around them including themselves.
We give so much credit and attention to all the negative news stories, the story about Michael Brown, the stories about Ray Rice amongst others. We hear about young people that are doing drugs, having run-ins with the law and even suing their parents over entitlement issues. Yet there are numerous young people that are making positive contributions to society and so often we fail to give them their proper recognition.
I met Miss Frushon in January of this year when she responded to a social media job post I had created looking for interns. At that time I was working as the Executive Director for a nonprofit community theater and they never had an intern program before my arrival. We would be setting out on unchartered territory.
Her e–mail response was very well written and she had a past positive experience with the community theater so it was natural that I would bring her in to interview with me. When she arrived she was wearing an infinity scarf and was professionally dressed. She was just so cute! But what really impressed me was her communication skills and the way that she carried herself. Nothing about her said, “I am only 20 years old” I immediately liked her and as we reviewed the job description she seemed both qualified and eager to get involved.
I set out a schedule for her, gave her projects with deadlines and even added her to the committee efforts for both a brand new fundraising event and also to an existing gala fundraiser. I sent her on her way with work. She was in school full-time, working a part-time retail job and still willing to work 15-20 hours a week with me as an unpaid intern. She worked with me for FREE!
Much of the work I assigned her would fall into graphic design work and helping to create print ready marketing materials with a “wow” factor. I wanted collaterals that would set us apart from the ordinary. Not only did she deliver but she also brought with her two of her close girlfriends and they too made great additions to our team.
Watching her interact with her closest friend Courtney and with her peers was a wonderful and welcome sight. They are supportive of one another in really healthy ways. I’ve known women that are two and three times their age that still don’t understand the concept of “friendship” and how important women lifting up other women really is and how women often tear at one another in competition rather than in loving and supportive ways. To her mother and her family and to her teachers I say, “Great job! This is one great kid!”
In my position as the Executive Director, it could have been intimidating but Miss Frushon was always confident. There were days we communicated by e-mail and text messages, she was busy and so was I. She also had a family that she loved and a long term relationship with her boyfriend. I can’t say that she is an “old soul” I never had that sense because she really has a young spirit but she is a very responsible and mature soul.
Some days as it was getting into the early evening hours and I was still working in my office since most days I put in were 10 and 12 hours and she would just show up. Just hearing her come in off the elevator and seeing her smiling face turn the corner to my office often made my day. She just showed up to engage, to review projects to keep me updated on her progress. I never had to go searching for her. We clicked and we clicked well.
One day on the job there was tension with another co-worker a seasoned one and I couldn’t understand the conflict since their work on that particular project had no overlap. When I contacted Miss Frushon to inquire she couldn’t understand it either. Without my requesting it, she just showed up to share and as it turned out the other co-worker was already in my office. It was face-to-face when it would become crystal clear that the person created the drama for her own gain, tried to diminish Miss Frushon and her work and was completely uncovered for the deceptive actions that she had been getting away with for a really long time. What struck me was how well Miss Frushon handled it when she could have chosen to be angered by basically being lied about and deceptive actions to make her look bad in the workplace.
When I decided to move on to other opportunities, not only did Miss Frushon stay at the theater but was immediately promoted to become a Director of Programming. Again she is a full-time college student, paying her own University priced tuition, working a demanding job as a Director and has healthy relationships with her family, friends and a stable relationship with her boyfriend! She is really hard-working knows how to get things done and consistently exceeds expectations.
Recently we shared “Thanksgiving Saturday” together with her boyfriend and her best friend, (who I am proud to say is my friend too) and fiancé and we remain good friends. If I could have handpicked my own daughter she would be it, she is a beautiful person both inside and out. When the Director of Programs position was about to be laid off she didn’t act the victim nor was she sour grapes over it or did she blame or bad mouth anyone. I was stunned that within days of her being told of her impending “lay off” and just days before the Thanksgiving holiday too she not only interviewed for an equally impressive position at a newspaper but secured that new position.
What stands out for me is her grace, her class and her poise and her ability to take what life hands her and come back even better and stronger for the experience. And she is humble and kind and comes from truly humble beginnings, she has a hunger for success and a drive and determination. She never lost her little girl attitude, the one we all had and the one that says, “I can do that!”
Miss Frushon, I will be watching you and applauding your successes all along the way and I am so proud to know you and to call you my friend! You go girl!
(Above picture Amber Frushon and Courtney Lane, Smyrna Opera House)
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