Shannen’s stepbrother, Jared, plans to be a doctor, and his family supports him all the way, putting money aside for his college education.
But they’re not alone in looking out for Jared’s future. Shannen’s employer, HireSmart, is helping, too, by providing a scholarship that will cover Jared’s ninth-grade school expenses, allowing Shannen and her mom, Cecile, to save for their loved one’s medical degree.
“I’m super grateful,” said Shannen, HireSmart’s virtual employee relations manager. “It’s really a huge help, especially to my mom. When I told her, she was super dramatic and super emotional. We celebrated when we heard the news, just a little gathering here at home.”
Shannen said her younger brother’s intellect was evident early. She tutored him prior to preschool and could see he was special.
“When I was tutoring him, I saw that he can memorize a lot of things so fast, faster than I can,” she said. “And then I realized he is really special. He’s so good in math and English at the same time, which is super rare. I really thought he was special even before he started going to school.”
The proud big sister and her family have celebrated Jared’s achievements in school.
“Last year, he received a reward of being with high honors, which was super great,” she said. “Everyone in the family was there to acknowledge him and the recognition.”
Shannen said she and her mom are working to save money for Jared’s education, but she said saving became much tougher after her father passed away recently.
“Because of that, I had to get funds from the savings that I had for his (Jared’s) education,” she said. “That was impacted. I need to restart and try to save up again for his college. My mom and I work on that together, but it is very expensive, especially going to med school. It’s something we need to prepare for.”
Jared changed schools this year and didn’t qualify for a scholarship, but HireSmart stepped in with assistance.
“I’m super grateful because this will really help me and my mom prepare for my brother’s future,” she said.
Shannen and her brother also look for ways to help others. She said Jared is “very generous to everyone, especially those in need.”
“It’s my tradition where every Christmas I would give back, so I would prepare food for the homeless and then go around and give it to them,” she said. “And then later, I realized my brother loves that, too. He would accompany me. He would usually save up the cash he receives during Christmas. He would give me a portion of that to help as well. And he started helping me since he was in grade two.”
HIRESMART TRULY CARES
HireSmart Virtual Employees has a nonprofit arm, HireSmart Cares, which seeks to better lives in both the Philippines and the U.S. with scholarships such as these. HireSmart truly cares for its employees, offering medical and dental insurance, good wages, a work-from-home lifestyle, a strong support staff, leadership training possibilities for career advancement, and scholarship opportunities.