YM&YWHA of Washington Heights & Inwood

Another Successful Year at SYEP

Another summer has come and gone, and we are proud to say that we have completed yet another successful year of SYEP. This year, we were able to open our doors to 100 additional participants looking for employment, bringing our total for this year to a record 400 total youth served. We were able to match these participants to over 50 local worksites that provided diverse employment opportunities such as working at hospitals, law firms, retail, camps, senior centers, etc. Twenty four of the participants were offered a permanent position once the program was over. We have received countless letters and phonecalls from worksites expressing their overall satisfaction with their SYEP workers and what a pleasure it has been to be a part of our program.

“I am amazed at how good the participants were this year” says Karina Munoz, Director of the SYEP Program at the Y. “I have received great feedback from worksites about their work and dedication. I can honestly say they have made good use of the program and have used the workshops and experience to grow personally and professionally.” 

Below is a small list of success stories from the pool of this year’s partisipants. We are always so proud to hear how we have helped these young adults, and we are even happier to share their stories:

– Caitlin is a recent graduate with a Medical Assistant degree and was having a hard time finding employment due to lack of experience. We were able to match her with a worksite in her field and as a result she was able to gain experience and was offered a permanent position as a Medical Assistant. 

– Scott and Jessica both worked at Camp Yomawha over the summer selected to participate in the prestigious CLASSP program until next summer. They will get a paid internship working with children with disabilities and receive a college credit.

– Serenity created learning arts and learning tech programs for the daycare center she was assigned to.

– Evan received the Rookie of the Year award for Exceptional Work at his worksite.

– Anna and Alfredo worked in the marketing department at the Y. Not only did they master marketing and clerical skills but they worked on a project for SYEP in which they interviewed participants on their experience. They used professional equipment and software to put together a video which sparked an interest in filming to both. The video can be seen here.

– Anonymous 16 year old foster care participant who was expelled from school and was on probation for a juvenile crime was able to hold his first job through all 6 weeks with additional support.  

– Two hearing impaired participants requested to be placed in an inclusive environment rather than in a self contained program designed especially for young people with disabilities. We were able to match their interest with a child care work site where they taught mainstream toddlers sign language and diversity, while improving their own verbal communication skills.  

We are so proud of all of our participants, and we look forward to serving more SYEP young adults in 2015.

About the Y
Established in 1917, the YM&YWHA of Washington Heights & Inwood (the Y) is Northern Manhattan’s premier Jewish community center — serving an ethnically and socio-economically diverse constituency — improving the quality of life for people of all ages through critical social services and innovative programs in health, wellness, education, and social justice, while promoting diversity and inclusion, and caring for those in need.

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