Building Better Futures by Paul Seale
As grocery stores embrace new technologies, smaller shops may be in danger of losing customers to the giants. The Old East Village Grocer is testing an online shopping option without getting too far from its mission as a training ground for those seeking job skills. Meet Khodr Nazzali. Fresh from triOS College’s Logistics and Supply Chain Management program, Khodr has been interning with the OEV Grocer since April, helping to create our first online shopping platform.
Owned and operated by ATN Access for Persons with Disabilities, the store is all about preparing people for their futures. It’s a neighbourhood grocer, but it’s also a live classroom where people learn job skills and prepare for private sector employment.
Under Khodr’s project management, the OEV Grocer has been testing its online store, with invited shoppers placing orders for easy pickup. Behind the scenes, Khodr was creating spreadsheets, finding physical storage space in the store, and putting hundreds of products into a user-friendly shopping site.
“I was given a huge task and a lot of responsibility, which I am grateful for,” Khodr says. “Other companies may not give their interns the chance to work on such a major project. Having so much responsibility really improved my confidence.”
Khodr’s internship is coming to a close but, when the OEV Grocer someday opens a live online store, it will be thanks largely to his hard work and dedication. The gratitude goes both ways. “I would recommend this internship to others,” Khodr says. “The staff at the Old East Village Grocer truly care about the success of their students and are always willing to lend a helping hand.”