When Mike Scheschy applied for a job at the Lighthouse, he figured he would work there for about six months, until he could get a “real job”. Thirty-two years later, Mike is the Production Manager, having worked his way up from an assembly worker to lead worker, to supervisor, and then manager. His sister, who also worked at the Lighthouse, teases Mike frequently, saying “this is the longest six months she’s ever seen.”
“I absolutely love my job and what it’s provided for me… just the fact that you know you’re able to contribute in a meaningful way – the Lighthouse as an organization has helped me be successful so that I can pass that on to others.”
Mike values the independence and opportunity for self-sufficiency that working at the Lighthouse provides. “I think that the best way to put that (is) you’re not living off society but you’re…supporting the society that you live within.”
Mike has been legally blind since birth. Although Mike doesn’t know what caused his blindness, he assumes it is genetic since his sister has the same disability. “I’ve always lived a life that was in the sighted world. I never would have looked at myself as being visually impaired so I thought I could do everything that a quote unquote sighted person could do. It wasn’t until I started working here that I realized how difficult my life actually was…because being here things became much easier because of all of the things that the Lighthouse does provide for us to make us successful.”
Education and employment
When Mike was in high school, he was interested in blueprints and drawing and wanted to be an architect. He later realized that he “was not really an academic type” and decided to take management and accounting courses.
”Some of my first jobs were in the food service industry…different food service areas, always in a management or leadership role, so I had quite a bit of leadership experience prior to coming here to the Lighthouse but I found that that really wasn’t what I wanted to do.”
Coming to the Lighthouse
When Mike came to the Lighthouse in 1980, he found that working in aerospace had a lot to offer which matched his interest in reading blueprints.
“My experience in leadership and management helped me to propel to that next level in leadership so I really felt at home working here versus anywhere else because this job takes all of my passions and puts it into one place.”
When Mike is not at work, he likes to spend time with his wife, 4 children and 14 grandchildren. Mike also has a passion for helping others. Every year, during the Christmas season, Mike and his wife dress as Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus and deliver presents to the homes of children who “need something special in their life.” Mike and his wife have been doing this for the past 15 years and have bought and delivered presents to hundreds of children.
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The Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc. transforms the lives of people who are blind, Deafblind, and blind with other disabilities. We are leaders in blind employment. Through employment opportunities, we are a catalyst for empowerment. We foster self-confidence and instill a life changing affirmation that independence is possible. From our expertise in cutting-edge technology to our understanding of mobility, we help people who are blind, Deafblind, and blind with other disabilities live fulfilling lives.