Tiger Mochas receives Innovator Award

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Photo courtesy of Auburn City Schools Lauren Ozment (former Tiger Mochas sponsor/former head of special education at AHS), LaDazah Finley and Johnny Turner, Auburn High School Special Education Department Head

Courtesy of Auburn City Schools

Tiger Mochas is one of the first-ever recipients of the AlabamaWorks Innovator Awards. These awards were developed to highlight programs that take an innovative approach to solving workforce challenges to meet Governor Ivey’s Success Plus attainment goal of adding 500,000 highly skilled workers by 2025.

Tiger Mochas is one of seven businesses that received an award across the state of Alabama, and this award recognizes programs that not only test boundaries but explore new opportunities to bring about change. Tiger Mochas was presented the award by Governor Ivey at the 2020 AlabamaWorks Virtual Conference, and LaDazah Finley, AHS Class of 2018 and co-founder of Tiger Mochas, accepted the award on behalf of the program.

Because of programs like Tiger Mochas, LaDazah learned the skills to be a successful employee upon graduation. LaDazah is now gainfully employed in the Auburn Community and looks forward to giving back to the Tiger Mochas program.

Tiger Mochas is a school-based enterprise run by students with disabilities at Auburn High School. After receiving funding from the FACES foundation (auburnschools.org/Page/2910), Tiger Mochas opened to sell coffee to faculty and students in 2016 before expanding to opportunities outside of school, and have since sold thousands of cups of coffee in and around the community.

This endeavor teaches these students skills like how to make change, interact with customers and essentially run a small business while preparing them for life after school.

For more information/photos, visit their Facebook page (tigermochascoffee).

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