Styling the Mayor: Opportunity Now Interns Enjoy Demonstrating New Skills

Sixteen-year-old Karvon dreams of one day being a stylist to the stars in Hollywood, so he knows the retail experience he is getting through an Opportunity NOW summer internship at Goodwill could benefit him someday.

But he never expected to find his first high-profile client through his work in the Goodwill store at 5412 Charlotte Ave. in Nashville. 

On June 22, Karvon answered questions for Nashville Mayor Megan Barry and toured her around parts of the store where he helps sort and organize the merchandise. The Pearl Cohn High School student even helped her shop for dresses and purses.

“I thought maybe I would get to meet her one day and it came true!” he gushed after the mayor departed. “She was very friendly and communicative.”

Barry visited Goodwill to personally observe the progress of Opportunity NOW, an initiative she launched this year to bridge a gap in youth employment. Goodwill oversees the program in a portion of Davidson County and has six interns working and learning new skills at several of its Nashville facilities.

The mayor’s easygoing manner and sincere interest in hearing from Goodwill’s six high school interns was also striking to Derek and Keshaun, interns who are developing a marketing campaign aimed at youth for Goodwill’s marketing department.

“She was cool,” said Derek, a Hillwood High School student. “She wasn’t like a politician. Most of them act fake, but she has a very good energy and vibe.”

Keshaun, who also attends Pearl Cohn High School, was surprised when Barry asked him about his mother, whom she met the previous day at a local restaurant.

“She was in there getting you a pizza,” the mayor explained. “She was very excited you were doing this (interning at Goodwill).”

The mayor’s impressions of the interns and their experience in the program might be best summed up by her reaction to one of the dresses Karvon helped her find.

“I dig it,” she said.

Photos thanks to: Michael W. Bunch, Metro general services photographer
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