Costa Enterprises McDonald’s celebrates Archways to Opportunity graduates with surprise graduation ceremony

Special to Gannett
The Destin Log

NICEVILLE – Costa Enterprises McDonald’s celebrated two recent graduates, Josiah Gould and Candice Montague, who were able to attain higher education degrees through Costa McDonald’s Archways to Opportunity Programs. Due to COVID-19, traditional graduation ceremonies were canceled, so the Costa team took it into their own hands to celebrate the accomplishments of Gould and Montague.

Complete with a cap and gown, balloons, and a custom McDonald’s hamburger cake, each of the employees were surprised with a graduation celebration at the Mossy Head and Niceville McDonald’s.

“Graduation is such a momentous occasion and something you work so hard toward,” said David Costa, CEO of Costa Enterprises McDonald’s. “We wanted to celebrate and do something extra special for our crew members in the Archways program since they have been working overtime to achieve these degrees. They deserve it!”

Gould and Montague both completed the Costa McDonald’s Archways to Opportunity Program, which provided them with the funding needed to accomplish their recent degrees. This program offers Costa McDonald’s employees funding to pursue their path to success and continued education including earning a high school diploma, working toward a college degree, and access to advisors who assist with an education or career plan. Some of these benefits go beyond the scope of the company and are also extended to immediate families of eligible employees.

Gould, a crew member at Costa’s Mossy Head location, has been with the Costa team for over two years and recently graduated from Career Online High School with a focus in retail customer service certification. After graduation, he plans to continue working for Costa Enterprises McDonald’s with the hope of growing into a more senior position.

Montague graduated with an associate degree in nursing from Northwest Florida State College. Originally from Niceville, Montague has personal ties with Costa Enterprises McDonald’s and has grown up with some of the team members within the company.

Montague was also awarded a glass Archways McDonald’s Award commemorating her completion of the nursing program. She has been employed at the Niceville Costa McDonald’s for three years as Shift Manager and plans to take her state boards before moving to Hattiesburg, Miss. to pursue her nursing career.

“I love the customers, teammates, regulars, and crew members at Costa McDonald’s,” Montague said. “I am extremely thankful for this company and what they’ve been in my life. I’ve been able to find my dream, maintain a flexible schedule, and the people I worked with became my family.”