For Ben Gehron-Rice, it started with a bulk purchase of pocketknives from China.
He sold the items on Ebay and Amazon, creating his interest in e-commerce and leading to a meeting with Ken McCombs III, vice president of McCombs Supply Co., Inc., in Lancaster.
A senior at Lancaster-Lebanon IU13, Gehron-Rice, 18, participated in a job shadowing Wednesday, March 1, at McCombs Supply, where he learned that the appliance supplier is a third-generation business that sells its items on 7 different websites and moves thousands of products each day through its website at mccombssupply.com.
“I thought they just sold things on one website and didn’t know they had so many different ways to sells items,” said Gehron-Rice, who lives in the School District of Lancaster school district. “I am looking to get into this field, so it helped to see how they handled e-commerce.”
Diagnosed with Autism, Gehron-Rice said being in a loud area is not good for him, so he is cautious of his work environment. Besides classic-rock music playing in the background, he said it was quiet and “a good fit” for him. “I did well here,” he said. “I like music.”
Also on the tour was IU13 job trainer Gary Miller, who said the visit to McCombs Supply allowed him to see a specific industry in a different way. He was not familiar with this Lancaster business before his visit.
“I learned McCombs Supply is here,” he said. “I learned about the amount of products they sell, the amount of ways to buy it, that people can walk in and buy things from the counter in Lancaster and that it is a family-owned business. It is a different avenue for job shadowing.”
McCombs Supply has experience with hiring workers with disabilities – including one with autism. The business has found employees through United Disabilities Services in Lancaster. Everyone, whether disabled or not, has a niche he or she can fit into, McCombs III said.
“I just enjoy helping kids that might have a disadvantage,” he said. “Anything I can do to help, I’ll do it.”
MCCOMBS SUPPLY CO INC.
McCombs Supply Co., Inc. offers replacement repair parts for dishwashers, dryers, microwaves, range-ovens, refrigerators, washing machines, HVAC, commercial refrigeration, commercial cooking, and more. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us. We are here to help you.