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Some People You Should Know: Ice Cream Interns

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Bobtail Ice Cream Shop in Wilmette is serving up internships for special teens. (CBS)

Bobtail Ice Cream Shop in Wilmette is serving up internships for special teens. (CBS)

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WILMETTE, Ill. (CBS) — A suburban ice cream store is serving up more than just your favorite flavors this summer.

It’s dishing up job skills and a whole lot more for some special teenagers who are some people you should know, CBS 2’s Harry Porterfield reports.

Serving up a tasty scoop of ice cream really does take practice. And one group of teenagers will tell you just how to do it. 

“You have to learn how much ice cream to put on a single,” Keyanna Cooperwood says.

This summer, Keyanna and other students from the Cove School in Northbrook worked as interns at the Bobtail Ice Cream Shop in Wilmette. The school is for kids with learning disabilities.

Teacher Annemarie Bennett prepared the youngsters for the internships.

“I wanted them to have a sense they were making a contribution, but they were here because they were needed. That was my hope and that actually turned out to be exactly what this was.”

The parents are particularly pleased at how their kids have benefited from the experience.

Laura Borgeson says it has made her daughter, 17-year-old Sandy Schweigel, more confident.

“When she came home and said ‘I worked the cash register,’ she was so thrilled,” Borgeson says.

“I feel so proud of myself,” Sandy says.

And Sheenetta Cooperwood sees a change in her daughter, Keyanna.

“It’s really built up her self-esteem to make her realize there are things she can do outside of school and home in the real world,” the mother says.

“I was not comfortable around people. But the more and more I worked, the more comfortable I got,” Keyanna says of her experience.

Bobtail manager Chris Liebelt was happy to give the teens experience in a work place.

“Quite often, they get overlooked in jobs,” he says. “We found here that it’s been far from it — they beat our expectations.”

Intern Tim Finnegan says he loved spending his summer working in an ice cream store.

“We do sell a lot of ice cream, especially on hot days,” he says.

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