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WPS students gain valuable experience from summer job programs

WPS students gain valuable experience from summer job programs

Southeast freshman Nautica Agnew Southeast freshman Nautica Agnew was one of 1,210 Wichita-area students who gained employment with 221 employers this past summer as part of the Helping Youth Prepare for Employment (HYPE) network.

In June, Agnew worked at Storytime Village’s Literacy, Entrepreneurship and the Arts Project (LEAP) Summer Camp where third- and fourth-grade students learned creative writing, illustration and book publishing skills.

“This was my first job,” Agnew said. “I worked Monday through Friday and I enjoyed working with the kids.”

Agnew was recently recognized by Mayor Jeff Longwell for being a national winner of the DollarWise Summer Youth Jobs Contest, where youth in summer programs had the chance to win prizes for completing six online financial education modules.

In addition to students like Agnew who gained jobs, HYPE programming reached 3,252 young adults through outreach sessions, job fairs and workshops. Longwell established a goal of employing 1,000 high school students through this network in 2016, and this was the first year the community reached and surpassed that goal.

Network partners include the Workforce Alliance of South Central Kansas, Greater Wichita YMCA, City of Wichita, Wichita Public Schools and Wichita State University.

“Helping young adults earn a first job is vital to their individual success and crates a positive impact on the quality of the workforce” said Jennifer Hughes, Chair of the Workforce Alliance Board of Directors.

Students interested in participating in Summer 2020 programming should check with their school counselors and college and career coordinators. Information about the first of the programs to start in February – Job Prep at the YMCA – will be shared beginning in November.