Job Corps students learn from mentors

Over 50 youth were matched with career mentors Feb.2 to mark the Groundhog Job Shadow Day. Students of Northlands Job Corps Academy shadowed professionals at local businesses, and youth interested in Job Corps will be shadowing students of Northlands.

"Job shadowing gives youth the unique opportunity of an up-close look at the real world of work. At Northlands we've had amazing success in using this tool, as it truly helps our students understand why we insist on certain rules at Job Corps and why what we call employability skills are so important for getting and keeping a job" said Tony Staynings, the director of Northlands.

Taylor Petty shadowed at the cafe of Middlebury College.

"I shadowed Tim Whitney. He has been working there for 14 years, and said he enjoyed every day of it. I hope that I can enjoy my work as much as I enjoyed that day at Middlebury College".

Taylor has since graduated from Culinary Arts at Northlands and is currently employed at a restaurant.

"Twenty five students shadowed last year, and this year our goal is 50. We are taking into consideration each student's wishes and career interests" said Staynings, adding that it takes more time to set it all up, but the benefits are much greater for the students. This year we offered an opportunity for youth interested in enrolling in Job Corps to spend a half-day shadowing students and form their own impression of our program.

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