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TWIB helps area youth become self sufficient and productive members of the workforce
The Trident Workforce Investment Board (TWIB) provides tri-county in and out-of school youth aged 16-24 with employment and educational experiences though the Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP).
The SYEP ran from May 1 – September 30, 2009. More than 560 youth were placed in over 400 business positions across the entire Lowcountry. Youth worked in 4, 6, and 9-week segments and were paid $7.25 an hour using the ARRA funds. Eligibility requirements stated that participants were to be unemployed high school and college students, out of school youth over age 18, single parents, and those working on their GED.
The TWIB collaborated with Palmetto Youth Connections, who oversees the TWIB’s program that assists out-of-school youth with the training, education, and career employability skills needed to succeed in the current and future labor markets.
“The Summer Youth Employment Program allowed us to provide employment and work experience for area youth who might not have had the chance to find employment over the summer. It also gave us the opportunity to increase our visibility among area employers,” said Kal Kunkel, PYC Regional Manager.
Youth jobs included: Landscapers;
In addition to gaining employment experience, students at Burke, Stall, Berkeley and Woodland high schools participated in a Credit Recovery Program (CRP) that allowed them to earn high school credits as well as learn work skills. The students who had not successfully attained enough credits to graduate on time were able to attend a comprehensive course taught at their respective high schools.
Overwhelmingly, both employers and employees agreed that if they could change one thing about the summer program it would be the length of time afforded the workers. Both groups voiced that the time was just too short and that the youth should be able to work the entire summer.
In the closing evaluations, the youth were asked “Did you feel you were treated fairly?” Over 95% said they were treated like adults and productive contributors to the workplace. When asked “What did you like best about your job?” a frequent answer was “they made me feel welcome.”
This program has multiple success stories and not only in the tri-county area. More than 226,000 of the nation’s young people had the opportunity to participate. The Southeast states accounted for almost 29% of the national total.
The TWIB provides funding for the Trident One Stop Career System, a nationally recognized workforce development system staffed by some of the best trained workforce professionals in the nation.
One Stop Centers are located at: 107 East Main Street, Moncks Corner; 1930 Hanahan Road, North Charleston;, and 2885 West 5th North Street, Hwy 78, Summerville. Affiliate sites include: Baptist Hill Adult Education, Hollywood; East Cooper Community Outreach, 1145 Six Mile Road, Mt. Pleasant; SC Security Commission, 176 Lockwood Drive, Charleston; and St. George Adult Learning Center, 121 South Metts Street, St. George.
For more information on available services and programs or to find the center nearest to you, call 843-574-1800 or TTY 711. An Equal Opportunity Employer Program. Auxiliary aids and services are available, upon request, to individuals with disabilities.