Teens seek to get HIRED!
Corey Dwyer, Child, Youth and School Services, speaks to a group of teens during last year's Teen Job Fair at the Solomon Center.

FORT JACKSON, S.C. -- Finding a first job can be a daunting task for today\'s youth as even traditional "teen jobs" are harder to find in this economy. Since May 2009, Child, Youth and School Services, as part of the Army Family Covenant, has empowered more than 130 of Fort Jackson's youth, ages 15-18.

"As coordinator, my main objective is to mentally prepare the teens for their apprenticeship experiences," explained Cory Dwyer, workforce preparation specialist, HIRED! program. "HIRED! also prepares them for life after high school."

HIRED! is an apprenticeship program in which teens are exposed to and experience different career fields. The teens are required to complete six prerequisite training sessions.

"After completing the prerequisites, the teens are then placed at a Family and MWR facility where they will complete their 12-week apprenticeship experience," Dwyer said.

During that 12 weeks, the teens are required to commit to a 12- to 15-hour weekly work schedule and attend weekly workforce preparation trainings. Upon completing a minimum of 180 hours and successfully attending the weekly workforce preparation training workshops, the teens qualify for cash rewards.

Qualified teens can work up to two terms per calendar year for a maximum of six terms.

"What I like about the HIRED! Program is that it gives me the opportunity to improve leadership skills. It helped me be committed to my job site," said Tanisha Knight, 18, who is currently in her second apprenticeship term. "Since I've entered this program I've become more responsible and understand the importance of values, time management, setting priorities, and doing my best in all I do. It helps me understand the things I will go through in the work force. I am blessed to be a part of the HIRED! program."

The core values of the HIRED! Program are commitment, integrity, focus, honesty and ownership. Together these values allow the teens to develop responsibility.

"I don't like excuses, "Dwyer said. "I always tell the teens, excuses are the tools the incompetent use to build monuments of nothing, and those who specialize in them are seldom good at anything. Life is progress; never settle."

For more information on HIRED! visit www.fortjacksonmwr.com/cyss/hired or call Dwyer at 751-7706.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16