What it takes to succeed with Verizon

Lisa Blake’s introduction (Christopher Reza)

Shannelle Sanchez

Project specialist of Irvine Valley College’s career center, Kaye McDonald, as well as Elizabeth L. Cipres (Dean of counseling services), and Keith Shackleford (Dean of health sciences, kinesiology, and athletics), encouraged students to join the career center March 8th on a field trip to Verizon’s Sand Canyon campus. This campus career tour was designed for students to see what it is like to work for Verizon.

The three hour presentation allowed the students to meet some of the leaders in different departments.

Verizon Representative, Lisa Blake, made sure to capture the audience’s attention by opening the presentation with the benefits Verizon offers its employees, or what they call “total rewards.” The total rewards include prepaid tuition assistance up to $8,000 annually if the employees are full time students and are majoring in a position that Verizon offers, bilingual pay differential, medical, dental, and vision from day one, employee phone discount (up to seven phone lines), 401(k) with 100% matching, and an opportunity to advance. 

“Verizon is still investing in its employees,” stated Blake. 

Dan Finnegan, Executive Director Human Resources for the West States, followed Blake’s introduction with a little history of Verizon and what the organization stands for. Verizon is a technology innovator and values their customers, therefore is constantly forming new technology to transform their customers’ lives. The organization believes customer service is extremely important and their customer service skills do not go unrecognized; they have been awarded multiple times by J.D. Power in their achievement. When searching for employees to join the team, Verizon only looks for individuals who want to make a difference and make progress in their positions over the years and have the passion to move forward.

“When you love what you do, you never come to work,” stated by David Cartagena, Director of Indirect Sales.

Cartagena started working for Verizon as a sales representative. He helped develop programs to help his peers how to take care of people, how to make sales, and how to deliver excellent customer service. He worked his way up to an assistant manager and worked in six different stores for 18 months, and with his hard work and dedication became the director of indirect sales.

Catragena, was not the only representative from Verizon sharing his testimonial of what it is like working for this organization and his journey as a leader in the company. Rebecca Fowler, Associate Director of the call center, also shared her story with the audience and invited one her employees Betzy Gomez, Internal Internship Recruiter, to share some information of the hiring process at Verizon.

“I always feel proud of working with Verizon wireless because I see how quickly we can get a group of leaders to express their satisfaction in the company, I got to tell you I hear the data guy, Janet, the district manager, I heard the HR people, I don’t know, don’t you think they had some real life stories? And that always makes me proud of working with Verizon,” stated Cartagena after the presentation. 

The seminar ended with a tour of the main building at Verizon that house a fitness center, call center, and fully staffed cafeteria. 

“It was very professional, I liked it…it gave me ideas on how to approach internships,” stated IVC student, Anuj Patel, 18, Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering major.

For more information on career opportunities:



Verizon Commercial: Powerful Innovators: 


Dan Finnegan, Executive Director of HR (Christopher Reza)

David Cartagena (Christopher Reza)