September 26, 2023 — The nonprofit Portland Workforce Alliance is seeking motivated high school students to join its Youth Impact Council for 2023-24. Students will serve as advisory peer leaders while also building relationships and developing career readiness skills for their own future. This is a paid role!
WHAT STUDENTS SAY
- “I met a lot of people and learned a lot of different perspectives on careers.” Nguyen, Parkrose High School, past participant
- “What I’ve learned here with PWA has really sharpened my optimism about going into the workforce.” - Fia, Rex Putnam High School, past participant
- “I really enjoyed being a part of this and I loved all the things we did. Along with the information we gained and possibilities that were opened. ... Thank you for being a part of this and helping me become a better person and have better ideas.” - Zane, Clackamas High School, past participant
- "Wonderful opportunity and experience.. ... With the Youth Council, it felt like I was being treated more like an adult." - Ben, Grant High School, past participant
WHAT TO EXPECT
Students in the Youth Council have two main responsibilities:
1) Serve as a sounding board for PWA career experiences, such as providing the student voice and experience to the 2024 NW Youth Careers Expo and career-mentor programs.
2) Learn leadership and career readiness skills from professionals and participate in discussions and interactive activities with their peers. In the second half of the program, each student will be matched with a professional in their field of interest for an informational interview opportunity.
APPLICATION AND ELIGIBILITY
Eligibility and requirements: Students in grades 10-12 are eligible. Priority is given to students from PWA partner districts (North Clackamas, Parkrose, Reynolds, PPS, Gresham-Barlow and Oregon Charter Academy). Students do not need expertise or prior experience, only an interest in career readiness and bringing their voice to PWA programs and events.
How to apply: Fill out this interest form. Rolling acceptance. Priority will be given to students who apply before Wednesday, October 11, 2023. Questions? Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Inclusion statement: The PWA Youth Impact Council is intended to be inclusive and welcoming. We welcome diversity of all kinds, including gender identity, racial/ethnic background, sexual orientation and economic circumstance.
The council will meet once a month between November 2023 and May 2024 after school. Meetings will be from 4:30 - 6:30 PM and will be a mix of in-person and virtual meetings.
Session 1: November 1
Session 2: December 6
Session 3: January 10
Session 4: February 6
Session 5: March 6
Session 6: April 3
Session 7: May 1
Why this work matters: PWA wants every student to have access to real-world opportunities to explore careers, expand their knowledge, and gain confidence for future job searches. Students on the Youth Council get this support while also “paying it forward” to help PWA serve the community, especially students from underrepresented communities and marginalized identities. You will be a voice for your peers, and your ideas will benefit students throughout Oregon.
- Leadership: Students will have the opportunity to help shape PWA’s signature event, the NW Youth Careers Expo, as well as other PWA programs and events. Students may attend PWA board meetings and will have access to PWA officers and board members who are leaders in their respective industries.
- Career readiness: Students will learn career readiness skills around resume writing, interviewing, networking and more.
- Completion stipend: Students who participate consistently in the monthly youth council meetings will receive a $200 completion stipend at the end of the term.
Student Ambassador: Youth Impact Council participants are expected to volunteer at the 20th annual NW Youth Careers Expo and its kickoff PWA Expo Breakfast on Tuesday, March 19, 2024, as student leaders, where they are in charge of greeting students and employers, answering student questions and helping ensure the event runs smoothly.
Attending board meetings: All YIC students are invited to attend PWA Board Meetings. This is a great optional opportunity to get a behind the scenes window into PWA’s work. Students can practice their public speaking by sharing briefly about their experience on the council.
Additional opportunities: Other paid and unpaid optional opportunities to engage with PWA’s programs may arise.