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  • Apply by March 8 for County Summer Youth Programs

    Feb 06, 2019 | Read More News
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    Pima County’s Summer Youth Employment Program is accepting applications from youth age 14-21 who want to work this summer or catch up on school credits.

    Pima County partners with several local agencies to offer job placements to students. Sessions are typically four to Library intern Angela Nachampassakseven weeks long and range from 20 to 40 hours per week. Note that not all ages may be eligible for every summer program included within the application process. Youth must be age 14 to 21 by June 3, 2019.

    Deadline to apply is Friday, March 8. Youth can apply online at https://summeryouth.pima.gov or pick up an application form at a local high school, community center or library. Applicants also may call 724-9639 for more information. The program is sponsored by Pima County’s Community Services, Employment and Training Department and ARIZONA@WORK-Pima County.

    Deadline to submit a report card and for out-of-school youth to take an assessment is March 29. 

    Service System Associates handles the concessions at Reid Park Zoo, where Matthew Stringham is the park operations manager. He said they’ve participated as an employer in the internship program for five or six years and have been very pleased with the results.

    “We have the students doing all sorts of stuff ranging from cash handling and basic customer service to kitchen production and general maintenance,” he explained. “It gives the students the opportunity to observe the full spectrum of what we can offer as a company.”

    Stringham said the internship program has served as a valuable pipeline of future employees. He recommends other employers get on board. 

    “With the current job market the way it is I would definitely recommend this to any employer looking for a way to get on the leading edge of a new market. It truly gives us a glance at the next pool of employees. Our Summer intern Brendon Casarezretention rate has been fantastic and many of the participants send friends and family in to apply,giving us an even broader pool of people to interview as possible employees."  

    Depending on funding levels, between 1,100 and 1,300 young people in Pima County can gain valuable experience while working for Pima County, the City of Tucson, the University of Arizona and dozens of participating local businesses. The pay is the Arizona minimum wage of $11/hour.

    The jobs they perform vary widely, from outdoor labor to clerical to retail. Virtually all industries are represented, including public, private, non-profit and for-profit organizations.

    Jobs with Pima County’s Department of Transportation or Regional Wastewater Reclamation Department involve outside manual labor. Applicants for these positions will be placed in a special pool of applicants, which may increase the chances of being selected for a summer job.

    Patrick Robles, a senior at Sunnyside High School, spent last summer as an intern in the office of District 2 Pima County Supervisor Ramón Valadez. One of his jobs was to research how to increase engagement with constituents on social media — a perfect fit for someone who already has a keen interest in government, including serving as student body president at his school.

    “I loved it!” Robles said of the internship, his second with the county. “I loved the experience of being on the ground and experiencing one-to-one how government operates and how it takes a village to get something accomplished. These experiences aid me to this day.”

    The Summer Youth Programs also include basic education, in which young people can earn elective high school credit through learning in math, reading and writing. Work hours range from 20 to 40 hours per week. Placements range from four to seven weeks depending on the specific work or education program.

    Positions are limited. The county received 3,958 applications last year, said Daphanie Conner, program manager. Program participants are selected based on their applications, grades, assessment scores and work interests as well as available funding, applicant program selections, geographic area, and employer/worksite requirements.

    Participants attend a one-day “employability skills” workshop, where they learn about good work habits and employer expectations before they go to work. 

    For more information, call the Pima County Summer Youth Programs Hotline at 520-724-9639.