Teens from Boys & Girls Club Experience the Santa Monica Destination Store

So, what do teens think about Verizon?

Well, we asked 15 members of the Boys and Girls Club of Santa Monica when they visited the newest Verizon Destination Store on Santa Monica’s Third Street Promenade!

“When they first heard that we were going to visit Verizon, they thought that they were going to look at phones,” said Karina Garcia, the Santa Monica’s Boys & Girls Club College Bound Director. “As soon as they came in, you could see how excited they got as they realized all the different interactive things that they could do.”

Verizon team members split the teens into groups to experience all six interactive lifestyle zones in the store, including Customize It, Get Fit, Home Immersion, Amplify It, Have Fun and Anywhere Business. Later, they formed teams and competed, navigating a Jumping Sumo obstacle course. Finally, they gathered to talk about the importance of STEM to their future careers.

“It was super cool to learn about how technology can be used not just for fun, but to benefit our lives,” said 16-year-old Gloria Ortiz. “I want to become a psychologist and I know that I can use this technology to help others.”

“When I grow up I want to be an animator,” said 14-year-old Ian. “After being here today I’m excited to see where technology takes us and how it will help me reach my dreams.”

The visit was the first of four the Destination Store will conduct for kids from the club. It’s just part of Verizon’s support of the club’s science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) Program, Tech Superstars. At the store’s ribbon cutting ceremony, Verizon Region President Luis Cruz presented a $10,000 Verizon Foundation grant to the club’s CEO, Tim Blaylock, to help fund the program that teaches basic and advanced computer skills to underserved children. 

“We work for an amazing company that gives us the creative freedom to give back,” said Destination Store Solutions Manager Mallorie Nutall. “I believe that is what life is all about! We have all this technology and different product solutions, but without the face-to-face interactions and experiences with people, we wouldn’t exist.”

The kids sure seemed to agree! As they were leaving the store, 15-year old Joshua asked, “Can I apply to work here? I’m pretty sure I can get my work permit!”

We would love that Joshua! This is what a STEM program is all about!