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Year Up Arizona Helping Young Adults Gain Employment

Posted By Rhette Baughman, Arizona Small Business Association, Thursday, July 16, 2015

Phoenix leadership gathered at the Maricopa Skills Center this week to celebrate the Phoenix launch of Year Up, a program that connects community college students with internships in Fortune 500 companies.

Thirty-five students at Gateway Community College are participating in Phoenix's first year of Year Up, which provides students with six months of classroom training in technical skills, and then connects them with companies for a six month internship. All students who keep up with the classroom work and requirements are guaranteed an internship through the program, said Arizona Year Up executive director Kim Owens.

"Our success in Phoenix is dependent on the fact that everyone has the opportunity to succeed," Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton told the group. "We are all in the business of success, and you are great models of success in this community."

The students have completed five months of classroom experience, and will begin their internships in June. The companies they will work for include JPMorgan Chase, American Express and Liberty Mutual Insurance."

In this program, I think of the students as the gasoline and the program like the spark of fire to help us get started," said Leonardo Ramirez Sandoval, a programming student who will intern at American Express over the summer. "It has really been an amazing experience for me." 

Ramirez Sandoval said he hopes to run for public office someday, and said he has made valuable connections to Phoenix business leaders through Year Up.

Students are paid a weekly stipend during their internships, which can increase or decrease based on performance.

Phoenix was one of more than 80 cities to apply to join Year Up, which includes about 2,700 students nationwide.

All participants this year are college students, but Phoenix leaders hope programs like Year Up will help lower Phoenix's rate of "disconnected" youth, who are people ages 16 to 24 who do not go to school or have jobs.

"Unfortunately, Phoenix has the highest rate of disconnected youth in the country," Stanton said. "We hope programs like these will encourage young people, who thought they didn't have the opportunity, to go back to school and try and get a job, or finish their high school degree."

Curtis Reed, Market Manager for JPMorgan Chase, presented a $200,000 grant to help support the new program, which he said is mutually beneficial for students and for companies in Phoenix.

"As a company, we want to be able to keep talented people," Reed said. "This is a great way to give students some experience in our internships, which is a great way to get a job at Chase. About 80 percent of our interns receive job offers after their internships are over."

Rufus Glasper, Maricopa Community College District Chancellor, talked to the students about making professional connections, and said networking and professional relationships will be their keys to success."

You don't have to know everything," Glasper said. "You just have to know somebody."

Originally posted at: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/phoenix/2015/05/05/year-up-phoenix-students-fortune-companies/26917957/ 



Do you know an 18 to 24 year old with a GED or a high school diploma who doesn’t know what to do next? Year Up Arizona can help. Year Up is a free, intensive, one year training program for young adults that provides hands-on technical and professional skill development along with internships at top companies across the Valley. Unlike other programs, Year Up students earn money while also earning college credits through Gateway Community College with a focus on Business Operations or Business IT specializing in computer programing. If you know someone who is ready to work hard and get ahead, have them contact Year Up Arizona today at 480-376-0898 or apply online at yearup.org/apply. Registration for August classes with January internships closes on Friday, August 14th.
 Spots are filling fast so apply today.


Tags:  education  employment  jobs  students 

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