There’s Another Incredible Story Coming From That Restaurant Made Famous by Teen’s Snowy, 10 Mile Interview
You might think a good work ethic is dead or dying in the United States. Overall, that might be the case. But as evidenced by the viral story of the teen who walked 10 miles for a job interview in the snow and the restaurant that hired him, there’s a group of employees in Indiana who are trying to prove that wrong — and enjoying it.
In fact, that restaurant is producing another crop of incredible stories about some of its other employees — like the one who works during the day as a deputy county prosecutor (more on that in a bit).
Last week, the story of Jhaqueil Reagan, the 18-year-old who was spotted by Papa Roux owner Art Bouvier walking 10 miles in the snow for a job interview elsewhere, went viral when he was offered a position at the New Orleans-inspired restaurant. Reagan happily accepted the employment. The young man and the owner instantly became viral stars.
Bouvier — yes, people who know him call him Papa — told TheBlaze even in the few moments he had with Reagan, his actions signaled a strong work ethic, which had him offer the young man the job so quickly. But he also told TheBlaze he “has a staff full of Jhaqueils.”
As Glenn Beck said when he picked up Reagan’s story last week, he was at first “thrilled” and then “bummed” that such a story — one that showcases someone willing to go the extra mile, literally — would be considered news in America.
“It shows us just how far off the mark we really are,” Beck said, referring to the idea that hard work and doing whatever it takes is becoming so rare it’s now a national news story.
Although it might seem like the nation is starved for jobs and people with the good work ethic to accept them, staff members at Papa Roux are offering a glimmer of hope.
Proving Oneself on the ‘Roux Croux‘
Kristin Erato-Alosinac is a rare authority on the topic of youth and work ethic because of her own diverse employment. The 44-year-old is a deputy county prosecutor in Hendricks County by day and a jack-of-all-trades at Papa Roux a few nights a week.
“It’s a good balance for me,” Erato-Alosinac said, explaining that she has worked two jobs for a while as her Croatian husband was not legally allowed to work in the U.S. yet.
With 15 years as a prosecutor, Erato-Alosinac said what she sees in her day job and what she sees in the youth at Papa Roux are at opposite ends of the spectrum.
“From my full-time job I see a completely different picture,” said Erato-Alosinac, who is one of two “age outliers” in a staff of mostly teens and young adults as Bouvier tactfully put it. “Eighty percent who come in don’t have a job. They either just don’t want to take that type of a job…I don’t understand how they’re unemployed. …I don’t know if they’re lazy.”
Then there’s the “Roux Croux,” as they’re called.
“They fascinate me,” said Erato-Alosinac, who was a regular customer at Papa Roux before she joined the “Croux.” “They’re different than the people just dropping off an application everywhere. They know what the business is about. They show they have the personality and the work ethic to get in.
In fact, Colleen Bouvier, Art’s wife, told TheBlaze for the last three years or so, none of their employees came from the traditional application process. They were either referred by word-of-mouth or were regular customers.
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Jhaqueil Reagan, Indianapolis Teen Who Walked 10 Miles For Interview, Starts Foundation For Unemployed
By PAMELA ENGEL 03/04/13 07:24 PM ET EST
Jhaqueil Reagan, Indianapolis teen who walked 10 miles for a job interview, is starting a foundation with his current boss to help unemployed teenagers.
INDIANAPOLIS — Donations have been pouring in since a story went viral online about an Indianapolis teenager who was walking 10 miles to a job interview during an ice storm when he was picked up by a restaurant owner who offered him a job.
Now, the pair is starting a foundation to help other job hunters.
Jhaqueil Reagan, 18, was walking to a job interview at a thrift store two weeks ago when he cut through the parking lot of Cajun restaurant Papa Roux. He asked the restaurant’s owner, Art Bouvier, how much farther he had to go. Bouvier told him the store was about 6 or 7 miles down the road.
“I assumed he was going to get on the bus or something,” Bouvier recalled Monday.
But Reagan couldn’t afford bus fare, so he kept walking.
Bouvier and his wife encountered the teenager about 20 minutes later while they were driving to run an errand. Bouvier offered Reagan a ride and found out he’d planned on walking the whole way.
“I decided I’d hire him,” Bouvier said. “If you’d do all that to see if you could get a job, you’d do it to keep your job.”
He also said Reagan told him he’d dropped out of high school after his mother died a couple years ago to help take care of his younger siblings.
Bouvier later posted the story on his Facebook page and, to his surprise, it quickly spread. Soon, he and Reagan were asked to appear on national television shows including Good Morning America and Fox and Friends.
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