Jordan Bryant primed for success with College Works

July 30, 2011


Jordan Bryant, front, and one crew, from left: Matt Price, Isaac Stranz and production supervisor Jerry Gaffney.

Jordan Bryant is 21 going on 70.

That is to say, 70 homes painted this summer.

Bryant, a 2008 Hood River Valley High School graduate, has gone from solo door knocking to hiring 24 paint crew members as he builds up his own business as an intern with College Paint Works.

"I cannot wait to see what I can do with this," said Bryant, who learned last fall of the opportunity with the College Works, one of the largest residential painting contractors in Washington state.

Turn to this month's Home and Garden special section for the full story of the successful summer for Jordan Bryant.

He is among the top 10 in sales for the nationwide company. By summer's end, he will have a company worth more than $100,000.

"I have learned so much, and started with zero dollars," he said

Bryant has developed 42 customers so far this year and figures to top out at 70 by the time he goes back to school at University of Oregon in late September.

Bryan is studying for a business degree, with a minor in human physiology.

"I'd love to get picked up by a company based on the performance show; I want to be in Forbes magazine one day," he said.

He said he was looking for a management position this summer, and when the College Works rep came to UO and told his math class about the opportunity to gain management, and leadership skills, "I thought, 'I could definitely do it,'" Bryant said. He did the initial interview, and then had to query former employees to make sure it was something he wanted to do.

Second and third interviews followed, and then a fourth interview with a company vice president "with more questions for about an hour, and then I got the job."

He had experience with business via his parents, Terry and Teri Bryant, who own Mid-Columbia Overhead Door, and he had worked building decks and other construction work, so he had a grounding in operating a business.

What he has found is that College Works has done even more for his social skills.

"I help people; I give them what they need. I sit down and talk to strangers all day, every day," he said. Most of the painting is done by his crews, but he visits each site to discuss each project's needs and particular requests from the client.

"I've always been involved in sports (including basketball and baseball at HRVHS) and always been independent and able to take clear instructions; and I was at the top of my class, academically," Bryant said.

"I also have a little sister (Jaci), and wanted to be someone she could look up to."

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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