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Jan. 6, 2017

 

 

TeenWorks First Aid Training  
 
 
Last year, TeenWorks, a popular paid summer jobs program,
received more than 1,000 applications for fewer than 500 available positions.
The competition is expected to be even steeper for summer 2017, but that
shouldn’t discourage teens from applying.

 

“We always have more students applying than we have job
openings,” said Ali Conley, an executive assistant at TeenWorks and lead
recruiter for first-year student applicants.

 

This year’s application window opens Jan. 10 and closes
April 10.

TeenWorks Training

 

The frenzy surrounding TeenWorks isn’t just about the $7.50
an hour starting pay, which increases each year a student is with the program,
or the additional financial incentives for things such as perfect attendance
and being the most valuable employee of the week. TeenWorks also provides
students with the hard and soft skills needed to succeed in life, in college
and in an ever-changing and competitive workforce. That not only includes
working with a diverse group of employers in some of the top companies in
Central Indiana, but a professional development curriculum as well.

 

“The professional development part includes everything from
resume writing to personal etiquette, networking, social media training, mock
interviews and more,” said Conley. “It’s a pretty well-rounded curriculum that
we collaborate on with outside organizations for their expertise.”

 

TeenWorks is open to students age 15-18 — current freshmen
to seniors — in Marion and Delaware counties. Preference is given to students with
at least a 2.5 GPA, who are enrolled in their school’s free-and-reduced lunch
program, but applicants are also chosen based on other criteria, including
student essays, personal background and more.

 

Students spend part of their eight-hour workday (from 7 a.m.
to 3 p.m.) on the job and the other half in professional development training.
Participants receive free transportation to job sites, free lunch and uniforms,
and scholarship opportunities (up to $10,000 per year).

 

With a variety of participating employers — from Indy Urban
Acres and Indy Parks and Recreation to IU Health — students acquire a range of
professional skills, which increases the longer they are involved in the
program.

 

“The longer a student is with the program the more they will
be able to get to a more refined, intense career-pathway opportunity,” said
Conley. “If they’re a first-year student, they might start off with basic
janitorial kind of stuff. And if they successfully complete our program and
professional development and return for a second and third year, then we try to
refine those jobs to make sure students keep growing and get more exposure and
depth, including in their field of interest. … It’s about giving kids an
opportunity to learn about many different career fields.”

 

The six-week TeenWorks program runs June 13 through July 21.
According to Conley, 400 teens from Marion County and about 80 from Delaware
County will be hired this year. To fill out an application or for more
information about the program, visit www.teenworks.org.