Applications for the 2023 Summer Youth Initiative program are now being accepted

FLINT, Michigan — With a job fair set for May 6 at Genesee Career Institute, the Flint & Genesee Education & Talent is encouraging teens to apply to work this summer through the Summer Youth Initiative program (SYI). 

A division of the Flint & Genesee Group, Flint & Genesee Education & Talent has hosted the SYI program for over 17 years, providing thousands of students with job opportunities across Flint and Genesee County. This year, they are excited to continue the initiative with even more opportunities for students to engage in workforce development. 

“Our goal is to give students an opportunity to get a summer job and earn both a paycheck and valuable experience. For some students, this might be their first job experience and we want to ensure that it is a positive one,” said James Avery, director of Talent Development for Flint & Genesee Education & Talent.

Teens interested in participating in SYI must meet the following requirements:
  • Must have successfully completed the TeenQuest pre-employment leadership program
  • Must be 14 to 19 years old
  • Must currently be in grades 9-12
  • Must reside and attend school in Genesee County
According to Avery, this opportunity is essential in helping build a strong workforce pipeline while creating opportunities for students to learn life skills like effective communication and team collaboration.

“For some students, SYI is their first job experience so it contributes to workforce development by giving students something tangible to put on their resumes. We also have a volunteer component that goes into the program that allows students to experience the power of giving back to their community,” said Avery.

Throughout this experience, Avery expressed the importance of making sure students feel empowered throughout the process of using new skills to land a job. 

“We want our TeenQuest graduates to remember the skills they were taught in TeenQuest and be prepared to stand up and stand out when they’re interacting with employers,” said Avery. “We have a variety of employers from non-profit organizations and for-profit businesses in the area, and positive interaction with these employers could give students a connection that could help them in the future.”

Although this program is specifically geared to support teenagers looking for summer employment and Flint businesses, there is always room for community involvement.

For community members eager to support the program, Avery shared that “the best way to support the SYI Job Fair is by encouraging the young people in your life who have taken TeenQuest to apply to work this summer. I know students might be looking forward to getting out of school and might not have a summer job on their minds yet. However, the deadline is approaching quickly to get a fun and important experience this summer.”

To learn more about the Flint & Genesee Education & Talent summer program, visit this website.
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Read more articles by Brianna Nargiso.