Page 20 - BusinessWest May 2, 2022
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Work in Progress
Summer Jobs Program Expands Its Horizons
Since its inception,
the SummerWorks program administered by the Commonwealth Corp. has opened doors for young people and introduced them to the world of work. This year, as the program expands to include individuals ages 22-25, it is primed to open more doors — and potentially create more opportunities, for employees and employers alike.
By Kaily Houle
YouthWorks, a state-funded summer-employment program that helps teens and young adults gain the skills and experience needed to not only find and keep jobs, but to begin to design a path toward success.
He’s watched over the years as the program has helped intro- duce young people to the world of work while also assisting area cities, towns, non-profits, and for-profit businesses with finding needed help and, sometimes, long-term employees.
And this year, he’s anticipating that he’ll see more of all of the above.
Indeed, program administrators are expanding the age parameters of YouthWorks in order to reach a broader range of young adults in the region. Initially, the program was offered to people ages 14 to 21, but now young adults from 22 to 25 are able to participate as well. The mindset behind this expansion
“The intent is to take young people, primarily those that live in high- risk, urban areas like Springfield, Holyoke, and Chicopee, Westfield, and provide them
with the opportunity of a structured work experience that usually
avid Cruise is more than familiar with the vast potential of Hampden County’s young people and their importance to the region’s business community.
  As the president and CEO of MassHire Hamp- den County Workforce Board, he administers a program called
        lasts five to six weeks.
 20 MAY 2, 2022 EMPLOYMENT BusinessWest

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