Edythe Copeland, CEO, Capital Area Michigan Works! joins the Michigan Business Network to talk about Jobs for Michigan's Graduates which is celebrating their 10th anniversary on Thursday, March 21st.
As CAMW! continues to work toward attracting and retaining talent in our region, one of the most vital components is focusing on our youth – the workforce of tomorrow. This requires partnerships in the region and a commitment to not only sustain these partnerships but to continue their growth. That’s why organizations that specifically target young people such as Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) – and, locally, Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates (JMG) – are so necessary. They assist at-risk youth who may need more guidance than the general public.
JMG is a program dedicated to preventing dropouts among young people who have serious barriers to graduation and/or employment. By partnering and supporting Youth Solutions through programs like Jobs for Michigan Graduates, employers open career possibilities for today’s youth and connect with the youth talent pipeline.
On March 21, Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates will celebrate its 10th anniversary. In honor of this milestone, CAMW! reflects on this unique organization that offers resources and support to graduates who have needed it most. Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates has been a statewide affiliate of the national organization since 2008. It offers programming in 18 Michigan cities, focusing on dropout prevention and recovery services, using techniques that have proven successful throughout the nation.
The program’s model can be applied in middle school, out-of-school or at alternative schools, but the most common format is with high-school students who’ve been identified by school officials as those facing substantial barriers to graduation —typically some combination of poverty, family instability and personal trauma.
Each program is run by a specialist and includes these elements: A cohort of 35 to 45 participants takes a for-credit class that trains them in six employability competencies – career development, job attainment, job survival, basic skills, leadership, self-development and personal skills.
A club, called the Career Association, forms students into teams that complete tasks often encountered in the workplace. The specialist provides counseling, mentoring and personal support to the students. For many program participants, this is the first positive relationship they’ve had with an adult. Students are introduced to experiences such as a national conference in Washington, D.C., or a statewide career development conference. Specialists follow students for at least 12 months after graduation, helping with employment and job searches and/or navigating postsecondary educational opportunities. For students who haven’t graduated, the specialist continues to help them complete the remaining requirements. The specialist tracks participants’ educational and career progress on a monthly basis during the follow-up year.
• Capital Area Michigan Works! partners with Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates in the Lansing School District at Woodcreek and at Potterville High School through Eaton Regional Education Service Agency (RESA).
• This program is a great example of the success that can come from giving students the support, resources and reassurance they deserve so they can choose to live the careers – and ives – they have dreamed of.
• For more information about Capital Area Michigan Works!, visit www.camw.orgto connect with the Capital Area Michigan Works! team, or to learn more about the Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates program, assistance with career development and staffing needs.
REGISTER FOR JMC HERE: ouryouthsolutions.org/event/10th-ann…-registration/