Getting an Early Jump Into the Working World

By Jana Bauer

It’s no secret that today’s young adults face challenges trying to jump-start their career. Stereotypes and a lack of hands-on job experience leave students feeling overwhelmed when trying to decide on the next steps post-graduation. Some employers feel that investing in youth requires significant effort for training, or that they may lack the soft skills necessary to obtain and retain a job.

So, how does a student with little-to-no experience establish credibility and gain experience in the job market?

In 2014, CareerSource Brevard (CSB) and the City of Palm Bay brought to life a vision of providing students an opportunity to learn the soft skills needed to become successful individuals in the workplace. Students also obtained a paid internship within the City. Today, CSB is proud to partner with the City of Palm Bay and City of Cocoa to offer this summer internship program!

Facilitated by CSB staff, work readiness training educates students on important career transition, emotional intelligence, life management, and technical skills of the job search process. Students complete assessments that identify interests, cognitive behaviors, ideal work environments and individual strengths. All information is translated into workplace values. Industry leaders participate on panels allowing students to ask questions about the skills, attitudes, and behaviors needed to be successful in their future careers. Community Credit Union of Florida provides a workshop on personal finance management, teaching the benefits of budgeting, managing credit, and the importance of saving. Students mock interview with hiring managers to practice their interviewing skills prior to interviewing for their actual internship programs.

The programs recruit approximately 50 students each summer and provide incredible internships. Many have the opportunity to work directly in City Hall, while others in private businesses. CSB has been honored to partner with local cities who share a passion in developing our future workforce! To learn more about participating in these programs, please contact Jana Bauer, CSB’s program planning officer [email protected].