PAST OPPORTUNITY: Summer Opportunities for Youth
Summer is a great time for youth to explore the many opportunities that are available to them. Be it through jobs, internships (paid or unpaid), and/or volunteering, all are excellent and important ways youth can learn to gain real world experience and contribute to their community.
Summer jobs are a great way for youth to explore opportunities while gaining real world experience. One new opportunity announced by the White House and supported by the U.S. Department of Labor, is Summer Jobs+. This initiative allows youth to get a jump-start on their career by signing up to be the first to know about a new summer job in their area through the job bank – an easy to use search tool to find summer opportunities.1
About Summer Jobs+
- Read the White House press release
- Read the Secretary's remarks
- A Toolkit for Employers: Connecting Youth & Business (PDF)
- Summer Jobs+ Pitch Packet (PDF)
Summer Jobs Should be Good Jobs
If you are a young worker and new to the workforce, or you know or work with youth who are looking for summer job opportunities, you should know there are several agencies within the Department of Labor that enforce laws designed to help youth have a positive work experience.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires that employers provide youth with a safe work environment, while the regulations enforced by the Wage and Hour Division ensure youth receive the proper wages for the work they perform and that the job does not interfere with education nor jeopardize health and well-being.2
To learn more about Summer Jobs+ , visit www.dol.gov/summerjobs to find out how you can get involved.
To find federal summer job opportunities, visit USAJobs:
Youth can intern in the federal government through a number of programs. Agencies can bring well-educated graduates into the workforce while at the same time give managers the ability to evaluate the student's performance in real work situations. Students also gain exposure to public service while enhancing their educational goals and shaping their career choices. Internships can offer clear paths to civil service careers for recent graduates; and provide meaningful training, mentoring, and career-development opportunities.
Examples of federal internship opportunities:
- Collegiate Leaders in Environmental Health
- Student Volunteers – Unpaid Federal Internships
- Truman Scholar Summer Interns
Another way that youth can contribute to their community is through volunteering. There are many ways and types of volunteering programs, which enable youth to give back, learn and grow.
Why get involved
- Volunteering is not just an altruistic act. It's an opportunity to advance in all areas of your life. Here are a few of the things you can gain when you give your time and yourself:
- Connect with your community
- Conserve funds for charities, nonprofits, and faith-based and other community organization by contributing your time
- Share your skills and gain new ones
- Meet new people from all walks of life
- Enhance your resume and make important networking contacts
- Promote a worthwhile activity
- Feel needed and valued
- Experience something new
- Serve your country3
Reports and Publications
- Using TANF Funds to Support Subsidized Youth Employment: The 2010 Summer Youth Employment Initiative (PDF)
- Innovating Under Pressure: The Story of the 2009 Recovery Act Summer Youth Employment Initiative (PDF)
- Reinvesting in America's Youth: Lessons from the 2009 Recovery Act Summer Youth Employment Initiative (PDF)
- Beyond a Summer Work Experience: The Recovery Act 2009 Post-Summer Youth Employment Initiative (PDF)
- Innovative Programs and Promising Practices: Indian and Native American Summer Youth Employment Initiatives and the 2009 Recovery Act (PDF)
- Opportunity Road: The Promise and Challenge of America's Forgotten Youth (PDF)
- The Economic Value of Opportunity Youth (PDF)
1U.S. Department of Labor. Accessed from: http://www.dol.gov/summerjobs/
2U.S. Department of Labor. Accessed from: http://www.dol.gov/summerjobs/
3AmeriCorps. Accessed from: http://www.nationalservice.gov/for_individuals/why/index.asp