Why a Rhodes Scholar’s Ambition Led Her to a Job at Starbucks

Why a Rhodes Scholar’s Ambition Led Her to a Job at Starbucks

Jaz started working at Starbucks because he wanted to help others. He saw an opportunity to create a positive impact on society through his job. Jaz believes that everyone should have access to high quality coffee. He wants to change the way we think about coffee.

Jaz Brisack wakes up at 5am every Saturday morning. She drives to a Starbucks near her house in Buffalo, NY. Once there, she logs in to check if she needs to wear a mask. If not, she goes about helping out with getting the store ready for customers before clocking out at 6pm.

Ms. Brisack grew up in New Orleans, the daughter of an accountant and a teacher. She attended the prestigious St. Augustine High School, where she played tennis and ran track. After graduating in 2016, she spent a year studying abroad at the University of Oxford. When she returned to the United States, she enrolled at Ole Miss, where she majored in economics. She also took classes in philosophy and psychology. Her goal was to become a lawyer. But after graduation, she decided to pursue a career in finance instead.

Many students pursue an education at universities and colleges because they want to get ahead in life. They are driven by ambition and idealism. Many students become baristas because they believe that it will help them pay for school.

Starbucks has more than 9,000 stores in the US. Not a single one of them has a union. When Brianna joined Starbucks in late 2020 she wanted to help unionize the company’s stores in Buffalo. She knew that if she succeeded, other employees might follow suit. That’s exactly what happened. More than 150 stores have already voted to join a union, and more than 275 stores have filed paperwork to hold an election. These actions come amid a rise in public support for unions. Last year, union membership hit its highest level since the 1960s. Experts say that growing unionization could put millions of workers into the American middle class.

In the past few years, there has been an increase in union membership among young professionals. A study by the Economic Policy Institute found that while union memberships declined among blue-collar workers, those in professional occupations saw an increase. Ms. Brisack’ s job at the hospital is a perfect example of this trend. She works during the weekdays, and her weekends are spent with friends and family. Her shift also represents another trend: a change in the attitudes of the most privileged Americans towards unions. According to Gallup, the approval rate for unions among college graduates increased from 55 percent in the mid-1990s to 70 percent last fall. I have personally witnessed this growth firsthand, as a reporter covering the labor movement.

I talked with Ms. Brisack, and she told me that she didn’t really see herself as belonging to any particular political party. She described herself as “middle-of-the-roader.” But when I asked if she thought there should be an active role for government, she answered quickly: “Yes, absolutely.”

Jake Sullivan is an American political strategist who serves as the National Security Advisor to U.S. Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr.. He served as the chief foreign policy advisor to Hillary Clinton during her 2016 campaign. He also worked as a senior advisor to John Kerry’s 2004 presidential campaign. Before joining the Obama administration, he served as the deputy director of the White House Office of Policy Development under President Barack Obama.


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