I can’t think of a better way to start the new fiscal year than with our Summer Youth Jobs Program. As many of you may know, this program has been a top priority of mine and I am proud to say that as of today, we have 335 teens working for the City, nearly triple the number from last summer!
Additionally, we’ve revamped the hiring process. Applicants are now required to submit a personal statement which includes their strengths and interests and must include letters of recommendation or references. They are also required to attend an orientation to understand the City’s expectations of them. The focus of orientation is to review Job training skills, work ethic, responsibility, professional behavior, and dress code. To help prepare for a successful career, teens are encouraged to advocate for themselves by working with their supervisors to iron out scheduling issues, to turn in timesheets weekly and to take responsibility for their performance.
The results have been great! The young participants are working in various positions in City departments, schools, parks, non-profit organizations and, new this year, private businesses in Malden, Medford, Cambridge and Boston! Kids working in City Hall departments are answering phones, entering data and performing other various clerical duties. Those assisting the DPW and Cemetery are providing landscaping services as well as assisting in cleaning the inside of our public schools. We have students at Malden High providing one-on-one tutoring for students in need of academic help and assisting in PACE programs which help prepare students with various special needs to function to their potential in the community. Others are working in various after school camps and mentor programs.
Malden youth are gaining invaluable experience that will benefit them with support and guidance that will extend beyond their paychecks to develop essential job skills that will enhance their career paths. None of this would have been possible without the support of the City Council and a number of staff and volunteers. Many have worked late into the night to get this restructured program off the ground and I am truly grateful for their help. Finally, I want to thank Malden residents and local businesses for believing in this program.
I look forward to the possibility of expanding the program in an effort to keep kids working during the school year as well. Stay tuned!
Mayor of Malden