The District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (DOES) hosted a career expo for participants in the 2016 Mayor Marion S. Barry Summer Youth Employment Program (MBSYEP) at Arena Stage in Southwest D.C. The Career Expo provided youth the opportunity to explore career choices, meet with employers, and gain additional information about available summer jobs. Nearly 100 employers participated in this year’s expo, including employers from local and federal government agencies, community-based organizations, the academic sector and the private sector.
“MBSYEP opens the door of opportunity for our young people,” said Deputy Mayor for Greater Economic Opportunity Courtney R. Snowden. “The Bowser Administration is committed to ensuring that every District resident has a fair shot, and MBSYEP ensures our young people have summer work experience that sets them up for success in college and career. I want to thank our supporters including Citi Foundation and the more than 100 employers who spent the day interviewing candidates at today’s Career Expo.”
The Citi Foundation, which has provided financial support to MBSYEP for the last two years through a partnership with the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund, is providing $260,000 as part of its Pathways to Progress initiative. “Summer jobs are a crucial onramp to helping young people develop the workplace and money management skills that can help build a strong financial future,” said President of the Citi Foundation Brandee McHale. “Our continued collaboration with Mayor Bowser and the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund will connect more District youth with a summer job experience.”
MBSYEP is a locally funded program that provides District youth ages 14 to 24 with high-quality work experience. Mayor Bowser fought to expand the program up to age 24 so that more District residents could have access to a first job, putting more young people on the pathway to the middle class. MBSYEP serves youth from across the District of Columbia but has its greatest impact in the city’s historically overlooked and underserved communities. In 2015, 57% of participants came from Ward 7 and 8, where the unemployment rate and opportunity gap are the highest.
“Ensuring that all youth in the District of Columbia are adequately prepared to compete in the District’s thriving economy is core to DOES’ mission,” said DOES Director Deborah A. Carroll. “We are committed to preparing our young people today for the jobs of today – and of tomorrow.”
MBSYEP 2016 will begin on Monday, June 27, and end on Friday, August 5. For more information about MBSYEP, visit www.summerjobs.dc.gov.