Summer and Year-Round Employment Registration Now OPEN
Cuyahoga County 14 - 24-year-olds can now register for the Summer and Year-Round Employment Program (SYEP) at www.youthopportunities.org. (REGISTER HERE!) SYEP finds subsidized and employer-paid jobs and internships for Cuyahoga County youth who need first-time work experiences to serve as a building block to future employment opportunities and an introduction to financial literacy. For past participants like Giade Ensley, SYEP provided a sense of purpose and direction. After just one summer working through Y.O.U. with the Mayor Frank G. Jackson Summer Employment Program in the journalism track, she discovered her passion for writing. At just 15 years old, Giade is building a brand to inspire other young African-American women. The Queen’s Lounge is her burgeoning magazine focusing on empowering young women and ensuring voices like her own are represented in the media. “I can honestly say this summer changed me,” Giade beams. “I have a totally new mindset. I’ve never felt so strong or so supported. I’m so grateful for this opportunity.” SYEP is also beneficial for the employers who team up with Y.O.U. In partnership with the MyCom initiative, Y.O.U. provides pre-screened candidates and ongoing support to businesses who participate in the program. The link to register for SYEPContinue Reading
Former Prime Time Participant Inspires Maple Heights ECAC High School
After nine years in the U.S. Navy, special recognition from President Barack Obama, and an undergraduate degree from the University of Maryland, Information System Technician First Class Evan Jackson has come a long way since his days in Y.O.U.’s Prime Time program. Now, armed with real-world knowledge and experience, Evan is giving back to the organization he credits as an integral part of his success. Evan took time during his leave month to speak to 50 students at Maple Heights Educational and Career Advancement Center (ECAC) High School about the program and Career Coach he says were pivotal in his success. “Without Y.O.U., and a career coach, and the knowledge provided in the curriculum, it would have been very difficult for me to succeed,” Evan said. “Mrs. Patton was a key factor in helping me get through troubling times in high school. The level of impact she had on my life, not only professionally but also personally, was instrumental in my success, and I am truly grateful to have had her as my mentor.” Evan said the Prime Time program helped him learn about professionalism, punctuality, making a first impression, financial responsibility, and working with men and women from differentContinue Reading
Starbucks Recognizes Y.O.U. in Project Give Good Campaign
It's not very often that we're surprised by special attention, but that's what Y.O.U. received when Starbucks professionals stopped by the office to present a certificate of recognition in the Project Give Good campaign. Starbucks started the Project Give Good campaign in December of last year as a way to brighten the holiday season for customers. What began as a gift card giveaway has become a signature piece of philanthropy for the java giant. Now, Starbucks professionals are taking to the streets to show appreciation of people and organizations working to make a difference in the community. Thank you, Starbucks for recognizing the Y.O.U. mission of helping teens and young adults succeed by providing educational and workforce opportunities, skills development, and access to career pathways.Continue Reading
Y.O.U. Winter Alumni Event with the Cavs
Watch Y.O.U. Alumni "Hi5" Dwayne Wade and LeBron James The Y.O.U. Winter Alumni Event was a success! Former program participants were treated to dinner, a Cleveland Cavaliers game (and win), and some up close and personal time with Dwyane Wade and the King himself, LeBron James. At each of their home games, the Cavs allow select attendees to create a “Hi5” tunnel players walk through as they begin warm-ups for the second half of the game. Y.O.U. alumni were chosen to build the tunnel and come face to face with a local hero. “I was excited and nervous to be that close to LeBron,” says Charles Matthews, a 2017 graduate of Glenville High School and former E CITY student. “I mean, it’s LeBron James!” Although he seldom talks about it, LeBron’s upbringing in the inner city area of Akron was similar to that of many Y.O.U. participants. LeBron’s story is not lost on Charles, who sees the “kid from Akron” not only as the NBA’s most dynamic player but also proof positive that hard work can and will pay off. “It tells me to continue to work hard, to push,” Charles explains. “I know if I keep working, I canContinue Reading
What's Your New Year's Resolution?
The crystal ball has dropped, and the three decipherable lines of ‘Auld Lang Syne’ have been sung, which means 2018 is officially here! As you start to make your New Year’s Resolutions, we hope Youth Opportunities Unlimited will be in your plans. Y.O.U. serves thousands of Northeast Ohio teens and young adults each year. To do this, we count on the support of our community. Whether through volunteering, donations, financial support, or sponsorship, it’s our community that makes the critical work we do possible. Supporting Y.O.U. means positively impacting the lives of teens and young adults living in economically distressed circumstances, preparing youth to enter the work world, helping students at high-risk of dropping out stay in school and graduate, and putting participants on a path to economic self-sufficiency. Every bit of support counts toward helping teens and young adults succeed by providing educational and workforce opportunities, skills development, and access to career pathways. Please, consider supporting Y.O.U. as part of your New Year’s Resolution. Volunteer with Y.O.U. or donate to Y.O.U. by clicking these links.Continue Reading
Congratulations, Onyango Pearl! JAG National Competition Winner
Please join us in extending congratulations to Onyango Pearl, who took home top honors at the Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) National Leadership Competition. Onyango won first place in the Public Speaking event. Onyango struck an emotional chord with the judges and audience as he detailed how the Jobs for Ohio’s Graduates (JOG) program has changed his life. He spoke passionately when describing how the program helped him deal with personal issues, assisted him in developing goals, taught him employability skills, and connected him with a Career Coach (Michelle Mauck) who both pushed and inspired him to succeed. Onyango took second place in the 2017 Youth Career Olympics Public Speaking event last April. With added instruction from volunteers and constant support from John Marshall Career Coach Michelle Mauck, Onyango spoke confidently and calmly as he addressed the JAG audience, making it all the way to the winner’s circle. JAG is a state-based national non-profit organization dedicated to preventing dropouts among young people who are most at-risk. Youth Opportunities Unlimited provides the JOG program at high schools in Cuyahoga, Lake, and Lorain counties.Continue Reading
Covelli Enterprise Donates To Y.O.U.
For over three years, Covelli Enterprise (a Panera Bread, O’Charley’s, and Dairy Queen Franchisee) has supported the Y.O.U. mission of connecting teens and young adults to jobs, internships, and credential training. Kimberly Francesangelo recently stopped by Y.O.U.’s office to drop off a donation and explain why Youth Opportunities Unlimited is so essential to Covelli Enterprises. “The educational aspect that Y.O.U. provides, helping individuals obtain jobs that suit them, that resonates with us,” Francesangelo explains. “We’re excited to assist with the continued growth of Y.O.U.’s programs with more individuals seeking employment in our community.”Continue Reading
Y.O.U. Holiday Hours
Y.O.U. wishes everyone a happy, healthy, and safe holiday season. The Y.O.U. offices (including Day One) will be closed Friday, December 22, 2017, through Tuesday, January 2, 2018. We will return to regular office hours on Wednesday, January 3. The Young Adult Resource Center at OhioMeansJobs|Cleveland-Cuyahoga County will remain open and staffed by Towards Employment.Continue Reading
Happy Holidays from Y.O.U.!
The holidays are upon us and, for Y.O.U., that means a time to give thanks. From volunteers to employers, staff to donors, participants to sponsors, we are grateful for the unwavering dedication, support, and generosity of our community. Because of your support, we were able to reach more than 6,000 teens and young adults from economically distressed communities this year and expand our school-based programming to Lorain County. In more good news, Y.O.U. was tapped to lead a consortium of youth workforce development and training. And it’s because of you that teens and young adults in Cuyahoga, Lake, and Lorain counties are on a path to economic self-sufficiency. THANK YOU! We wish you, our valued community members, a joyous and safe holiday season and prosperous new year!Continue Reading
Young Entrepreneurs Shop Till They Drop
They’re crowding the checkout aisles with their carts stuffed with goodies, but they aren’t your typical holiday shoppers. These are E CITY students purchasing the raw materials that they will turn into their business ventures. Throughout November and December, E CITY students from all seven participating schools are heading to stores to begin building their entrepreneurial enterprises. Through the E CITY program, youth learn business acumen, financial capability, and entrepreneurship skills. During these shopping trips, students learn to manage budgets and balance what they want versus what they need to be successful. While some students wandered the aisles looking for inspiration, John F. Kennedy student Niyah Willis knew precisely what she needed to get her candy apple business up and running. “Sometimes, I crave a candy apple, but you can only get them through the fall,” Niyah explains. “I decided to create my own. And I have three flavors in addition to the traditional candy apples. Now, I just need to package them, and that’s what I’m looking for today.” With her cart full of ribbons, pointed bamboo sticks, and flat-bottomed cellophane bags, Niyah says she’s ready to start building her business and sees E CITY as a training groundContinue Reading