For high school students looking for a summer
job with pay and other benefits, there’s still hope. TeenWorks, a non-profit employment and college readiness program, has hundreds
of jobs waiting to be filled.


Landon Martin, program director, said the
organization has a “record-breaking” number of positions available this year.
For Marion County youths, it’s 350.


But they won’t last long. The deadline to
submit applications is April 10.


TeenWorks partners with all public,
charter and private high schools in Indianapolis and Muncie, including
Indianapolis Public Schools, to provide students age 15-18 with jobs at various
sites throughout the summer.


More than 100 IPS students have already applied.


“It’s nothing but positivity for the kids
because it teaches them punctuality, communication, responsibility and
different job skills and life skills,” said Harry Mimms, a counselor at New
Tech at Arsenal Technical High School, who has also served as a TeenWorks work-team


The six-week program has students working
in teams at various community partner worksites during the morning hours. But
the program offers much more than a job and a paycheck.


In the afternoons, students transition to
college readiness or professional development sessions, where they learn valuable
skills on interviewing, etiquette, money-management, creating long- and
short-term goals and conflict resolution, among others.


Mimms has noticed a difference in
students who have participated in TeenWorks.


“I see a difference in the kids,” he
said. “The different issues that arise in school, they handle them better.”


Dr. Vernita Robinson, director of
guidance at Arsenal Technical High School, said students love their experience
through TeenWorks because “it’s not your typical summer jobs.”


Youths work in a variety of industries
through the program’s work-site partners, including the Indiana State Fair,
Harrison Center for the Arts, Indy Urban Acres and IU Health.


“Whether the
teens are working at Indy Urban Acres or helping with the (Nicholson Performing
Arts Academy) School 70 transition, our teens will be learning what it means to
earn a paycheck, put in a hard day’s work and give back to their community,”
said Martin.


In addition to the work experience and other
skills gained, students will receive free lunch and transportation to and from
job sites daily. The program basically removes many of the barriers that
prohibit teens from obtaining summer employment.


Although demand for summer jobs for teens
is high, not everyone is eligible for the program. Students must have a 2.5 GPA
during the academic school year and be on free or reduced lunch to secure one
of the 350 available spots.


“For the past 34
summers, TeenWorks has been providing low-income teenagers with meaningful job
experience and professional development training,” said Martin. “With 350 high
school students employed this summer, we are confident that we will not only
make a tremendous impact on the teens themselves, but also on our entire
Indianapolis community.”
For more information
about the program and to complete an application before the deadline, click here.