Letter to Editor 04

Congratulations, you have graduated from high school! Studying hard, passing tests, doing homework on time, respecting teachers and fellow students, working beyond what is expected of you, and being accountable for your actions are all a part of achieving your diploma … now what?

The most important thing to remember as you leave high school is to develop and maintain a good work ethic!

Your entire future depends on this. You may have a diploma and top grades, but that does not guarantee success. You must work hard at your job or avocation starting right now. Employers hold your future in their hands because they are the individuals who evaluate your work habits. Most importantly, they can give you good references or bad references depending on how you accomplish the work you are assigned.

What is a good work ethic?

It consists of a combination of the following traits:

• Taking the initiative to see any work to be done

• Going beyond the call of duty to accomplish a task even if it means working overtime

• Being a reliable person

• Being respectful to authority and your co-workers

• Being professional in what you do

• Being responsible and accountable for your actions and duties

• Being punctual, prepared and organized

• Being willing to take constructive criticism on your way to becoming a better worker

• Being a part of respectful interactions and communications with all people

• Being a part of a cooperative team where everyone’s skills are valued

These are the keys to a successful career and the key to your future. Best wishes!

For over 35 years I provided semester internships for IUP students to work with me at the Penn State Cooperative Extension in Indiana County. One of my favorite sayings was that “I’d rather have a ‘C’ student with a good work ethic than an ‘A’ student with no desire to work.”

It is unfortunate that I am hearing from many local employers that the positive work ethic is hard to find. Developing a work ethic begins at home or with a mentor who cares. A positive work ethic is the future for our children and our Indiana County workforce.

Pat Leach

Marion Center