BB2C Business Perspective: DeeAnn Gehlauf

DeeAnn Gehlauf is one of the few business/employer representatives (if not the only one) that has been with BB2C since the very first meeting in August of 2012. The sub-committee she chose to be a part of created the Problem Scenario Project and the follow-up networking event, Education after Hours. Realizing the impact of a program like the Problem Scenario Project, she has been instrumental in helping us get Memorial Health System employees to be a part of the process. This partnership has spilled over into other BB2C programs, such as the Career Mentor Program, Job Shadowing, and HS Internship, and has been an essential part of creating an ecosystem of career development that benefits all involved. Effectively partnering with local businesses is a learned skill…DeeAnn has certainly helped us hone that skill.

In her own words….

The Education After Hours event is a wonderful way for businesses and educators to get to know one another better and to partner on behalf of our students and community. I’ve been involved with BB2C and this project since its inception and every year I am amazed at the level of energy and passion in the room once people start networking. First, it’s always great to hear from a business-teacher pair that has worked on a problem scenario together. I am excited about the pair this year because the business partner works in the Memorial Health System with me. I know Kevin didn’t really know what he was getting into and I appreciated his willingness to participate when I asked if he would. In the end, I know that he got much more out of the experience than he anticipated and feel sure he will participate again. Second, I try to move through the room and eavesdrop a little to see what is happening. Every year I hear people making connections and commitments that will enhance our students’ experiences. Someone will be sharing a problem or challenge and the next thing you know the person they are talking to says, “Come on, I have to introduce you to so-and-so, they will be able to help.” People are so willing to extend themselves and to find ways to bring the business community into the classroom. And teachers genuinely want to hear what we need from their students when they reach us as employees. For me, Education After Hours affirms, year after year, that we have great people in our community that can achieve incredible things when given the right opportunity.

Thank you for being an excellent champion of our work, DeeAnn!