Tears and laughter were shared yesterday morning as DFS Saipan held its Journeyman Graduation ceremony for six sales associates.
DFS general manager Bruce Lorange said this “is a very special day” and that he is pleased with the hard work shown by the new graduates.
“I can’t express enough how proud I am because, together with their managers and colleagues, we’ve watched them and saw them through their difficulties,” Lorange said.
The program featured speeches from the graduates and a class video. Certificates were presented to the graduates, who later ended the program with a short dance number.
One of the graduates, Miao Wang Larimer, said she is “very excited and proud to be selected as a Journeyman,” and she is thankful to the team, managers, and coworkers who helped her through it.
A tearful Tomoko T. Esteves could barely express her gratitude but managed to say, “I thank everybody and the team from the bottom of my heart.”
DFS’ Learning & Development specialist Iris J. Gaza said the Journeyman Graduation is intended to recognize all the hard work the graduates did throughout the year.
The Journeyman Program consists of four classes, which includes observations, working, homework, and exams that they have to pass with at least 90 as their score.
The program’s goal is to continue raising the level of service for customers and, with the new knowledge and training the graduates learn through the program, they can help other sales associates and new staff.
The program selects about six to eight potential sales associates and trains them with special, additional training. The graduates can choose to become managers or remain as sales associates, but their new training provides them with new choices in their career path.
So far the program has produced a total of 14 graduates, two of whom have left the island. DFS currently has 12 Journeymen left.
To be a possible Journeyman, they must apply to be in the program and get the recommendation of their managers and another coworker.
The Journeyman Program at DFS is exclusive to the company and has been going on for two years. (Jayson Camacho)