Success Stories | Goodwill Achievers of Central & Southern IN
Goodwill Achievers Central and Southern Indiana

2018 Annual Award Recipients

Learn more about current and past award recipients, download our Annual Report, view photos from the Awards Breakfast and more.

2018 Achiever of the Year

Pency Engmawii, 2017 Excel Center graduate

 

The Achiever of the Year is someone who has shown significant progress and accomplishment in achieving independence and self-sufficiency, and who also represents Goodwill’s efforts in employment, education or health — the equal pillars of our mission. Pency Engmawii grew up with 11 siblings in a small Burmese village where an education was difficult to attain if your family wasn’t wealthy. Pency went to Malaysia as a refugee and after nearly three years, at just 21 years old, took advantage of an opportunity to come to the United States. When she enrolled at The Excel Center in 2012, she struggled with the coursework because English was her second language. She leveraged the tutoring and resources available to her through The Excel Center, earning her diploma in 2017. She is now seeking a bachelor’s degree in accounting and business administration at Ivy Tech.

Working-age Hoosiers lack a high school diploma

Excel Center graduates since 2011

2018 Employment Achievement Award

Dylan Snell, 2013 Excel Center graduate

 

The Employment Achievement Award recognizes a current or past employee who has removed a barrier or shown significant progress and accomplishment overcoming barriers to secure employment and/or advance to a middle-skill job or higher wage. When Dylan Snell enrolled at The Excel Center in 2012, he was struggling with homelessness and a felony conviction that narrowed his job prospects. Upon graduation, he was hired at the Anderson Goodwill store as a part-time associate, eventually working his way up to Team Leader and then Assistant Site Leader. After nearly four years, Dylan began working with Goodwill’s job placement team to explore opportunities outside of Goodwill. He landed a position in commodity sales support at Kirby Risk where he continues to excel.

%

Indiana's three-year recidivism rate

Placed into jobs by Goodwill in 2017

2018 Health Achievement Award

Mansa Samlafo, 2017 Nurse-Family Partnership graduate

 

The Health Achievement Award recognizes a Nurse-Family Partnership Indiana graduate who has illustrated an outstanding commitment to participating in the program and achieving a healthy pregnancy. Originally from Ghana, Mansa Samlafo moved to the United States in 2012. When she learned she was pregnant, she enrolled in Goodwill’s Nurse-Family Partnership, at the recommendation of a friend. Mansa endured the entire pregnancy on her own, as her husband has not yet been able to join her in the U.S. Besides securing a home for herself and high-quality daycare for her daughter, Mansa obtained a car and, with the help of Goodwill’s job placement team, a job as an Administrative Coordinator with Goodwill’s IT department where she is a highly valued member of the team.

Indiana's infant mortality ranking

Estimated return for every dollar spent on Nurse-Family Partnership Indiana

2018 Indianapolis Metropolitan High School Outstanding Student Achievement Award

Chris Pack, 2018 Indianapolis Metropolitan High School graduate

 

Chris Pack enrolled at Indianapolis Metropolitan High School as a freshman and has been at the top of his class all four years. He currently carries a 4.147 GPA and is the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper. He is also a member of the track team and has taken on the role of videographer for the boys’ basketball team. The staff describes Chris as professional in both his dress and interactions. He is one of only two students in his senior class who qualified to take college classes at IUPUI, where he earned a perfect score on his final exam and the praise of his professor. He is undecided on where he will go to college but plans to study graphic design and hopes one day to work at ESPN or Paper Leaf, a graphic design company.

%

of Indianapolis Met graduates enroll in college

%

of Indianapolis Met students are eligible for free or reduced lunch

2018 Barbara Robinson Memorial Award

Courtney Person

 

The Barbara Robinson Memorial Award is presented to a Goodwill Commercial Services employee who has demonstrated a substantial desire to overcome barriers. Courtney Person joined Goodwill via Easter Seals Crossroads in 2012 as a janitor at the Minton-Capehart Federal Building. In 2015, she was promoted to Team Leader. As a result of her learning disability, she thought the certificate of completion she earned in high school was the end of her educational journey. However, through encouragement and guidance, she enrolled at The Excel Center. After nearly three years, she is due to walk across the stage in May 2018 for her diploma. She also recently started classes for a Dental Radiology Certification.

Hoosiers with disabilities lack a high school diploma

%

of Goodwill’s nearly 3,800 employees have a disability

2018 Connections Award

Eskenazi Health

 

The Connections Award recognizes a partner organization that has supported Goodwill’s programs and mission. Goodwill’s partnership with Eskenazi Health was born in 2011 when Goodwill first implemented its Nurse-Family Partnership program. Eskenazi Health refers all eligible women to the program, with a majority of the total families served coming through this partnership. In 2013, Goodwill TalentSource developed a hiring relationship with Eskenazi that evolved to externships for medical assisting certification candidates as well as work-based learning opportunities through five medical office/clerical internships. So far, 21 Goodwill candidates have been hired by Eskenazi Health.

2018 Retail Site of the Year Award

Lafayette Road

 

The Retail Site of the Year Award recognizes the Goodwill store that has made the most progress in furthering our organization’s mission to help individuals overcome barriers through education, health and employment. With 76 retail stores in central and southern Indiana, it’s quite an accomplishment to receive this award. The Lafayette Road retail store in Indianapolis did not just exceed production goals, they are also a shining example of Goodwill’s mission in action. The store employs a number of individuals with barriers, including physical and cognitive disabilities, criminal histories, lack of a high school diploma, food insecurities, language barriers and more. The staff prides itself on accommodating those with challenges while ensuring work is a fun, safe place for all.