Career Ready Tempe is a youth-workforce pilot program, funded by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Career Readiness Lab Grant and the City of Tempe’s Innovation Fund. The program aims to prepare Tempe youth to participate in the future workforce and to develop the youth-talent pipeline in the City of Tempe so that it aligns with industry needs.
The Tempe Chamber of Commerce Foundation and the City of Tempe’s Human Services and Economic Development departments have collaborated with Tempe employers to create 8-week summer internships for students in fields that are in-demand. This year’s internship focus area is advanced business services (ABS), one of the largest employment sectors in the Tempe economy with projections for continued employment and advancement opportunities for years to come.
Generation Z has co-existed with the internet for the entirety of their existence, making them natural assets to companies that need to adapt and be innovative in order to survive in this digital age. However, many young workers lack the soft skills and experience required for professional sustainability. This barrier expands for those who have less access to resources, such as family guidance and financial support. Career Ready Tempe attempts to fill these critical skills and opportunity gaps by providing training and paid internships to rising juniors and seniors in high school who are income-eligible.
To equip these students for success in future employment, Career Ready Tempe has incorporated Arizona State University’s Edge certificate program into its model. Edge is a high-quality soft skills training program focused on providing young people with customer service, leadership, and personal development skills. All of which are imperative to their longevity as future professionals.
Through its efforts to pair youth with College Connect Tempe Mentors who will assist them in navigating their career and educational goals, Career Ready Tempe has been strategically designed to align with Achieve65Tempe —Tempe City Council’s goal to reach 65 percent post-secondary degree attainment for residents by the year 2030.
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