Young Kim loves her job and it shows

Oct 9, 2018

Credit Beth Adams/WXXI News

In celebration of National Disability Employment Awareness Month, a local nonprofit is recognizing a long-time employee.

Young Kim is 37 years old. She's been working at Unistel Industries on Blossom Road in Rochester since 2002.

Unistel is a nonprofit that provides job training and placement for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Young and her colleagues work on assembly lines at the company, which is the country's number one supplier of spices for the U.S. military.

"I label bottles, weigh spices, box the bottles, and ship them out and make sure they have the right label on them," Young said.

At a ceremony on Tuesday morning, with her co-workers cheering, Young was among a handful of people around the state nominated for the William B. Joslin Outstanding Performer Award.  It's an honor for individuals who have exceptional job performance.

"I was shocked and kind of excited and I was happy...I'm just happy I got chosen,” she said.

With the skills she's learned at this job, Young has a dream of working in a child care setting. She has some experience with kids through babysitting and at the YMCA and Girl Scouts.

"I like their little curiosity 'cause they like to ask a lot of questions,” she said. “They're so adorable and I love working with kids."

Andrew Sewnauth, executive vice president of operations at CDS Life Transitions, which operates Unistel.  He said Young goes above and beyond in her job and demonstrates outstanding dedication.

"It's more important for people to feel like their peers recognize them and that's what this award is. It's their fellows coming by and saying, 'listen, you did a great job. I want to work alongside you. I want you to get thanks, a little time in the sun.' And everyone needs that."

The winner of the William B. Joslin award will be recognized at a meeting of New York State Industries for the Disabled on Thursday.

This story is reported from WXXI’s Inclusion Desk.