375 Young People Complete Wilmington’s Summer Youth Career Development Program

Wilmington’s Summer Youth Career Development Program YCD youth employees express their appreciation to Bank of America (Image courtesy of the City of Wilmington)

WILMINGTON, DEWilmington Mayor Mike Purzycki and Parks and Recreation Director Ian Smith recently announced the successful conclusion of the summer session of the 2021 Youth Career Development (YCD) Program. Both the Internship employment track, which began June 21, and the Workforce track, which began June 28, have now officially ended as the Parks and Recreation staff prepare for the start of the fall YCD Program in October. The 2021 YCD Program was presented in partnership with the Delaware Department of Labor and through the generous support of Bank of America, which provided a $100,000 grant to the YCD.

“We altered the title of this program a few years ago to add the word ‘career’ and we expanded it to year-round because for many young people, our program is their first employment opportunity and their first chance to focus on a possible career,” said Mayor Purzycki. “Bank of America has again demonstrated its commitment to our City and its children and youth by enabling us to bring more young people into the program. Many thanks also to Ian Smith and YCD Division Manager Nicole Adams and the Parks and Recreation team for their ongoing efforts to assist our youth.”

“Parks and Recreation remains committed to working with our partners to provide youth with an opportunity to gain workforce knowledge and experience,” said Parks Director Smith.  “We know that what information and skills are gained in the Youth Career Development Program can greatly supports our youth in making better decisions about their future.”

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To be eligible for the Parks and Recreation Youth Career Development Program, participants must be 14 to 21 years old, complete the online/mobile phone registration, meet residency and job-eligibility requirements, pass all background checks and drug screenings, and arrange for direct deposit of their paychecks.

The young people express thanks to Bank of America for its ongoing support

Internship Track
YCD placed youths in one of at least 75 internship positions with entities that include United Way, Code Differently, Interfaith Housing, Teen Warehouse, Freedom School, University of Delaware-Green Jobs, Beacon of Hope, Theatrical Delights as well as the City of Wilmington Art Works. Interns were selected through an open and competitive interview process and were assigned a career mentor during the six-week program. After their successful completion of the program, each participant received a letter of recommendation from their employer.

Workforce Track
YCD placed approximately 300 youths in entry-level jobs that were available in diverse businesses and agencies throughout the community. Partner worksites included the City of Wilmington, William “Hicks” Anderson Community Center, Catering Connections, Babe Styling Salon, Delaware College of Art and Design, the DuPont Environmental Education Center, Southbridge Neighborhood House, Girls Inc., the Walnut YMCA, Shop Rite, Teen Warehouse, Urban Artist Exchange, the Riverfront Development Corporation, R.E. Williams Tax Accountants, Inc., Congo Funeral Home, as well as local law offices, childcare centers, and other employers.

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