Step Up Youth Employment Program, a program of the City of Minneapolis, AchieveMpls, DEED, and PPL, prepares today's youth for tomorrow's careers by recruiting, training, and placing nearly 1,600 young people (ages 14-21) in paid internships each year with over 200 regional employers (from Fortune 500 companies and small businesses, to public agencies and nonprofits).
As one of the nation's leading youth employment programs, Step Up leverages a collective of more than 200 partners spanning 15 in industries and multiple sectors.
Step Up supports historically underrepresented youth in Minneapolis who are ready to navigate the professional world. The program helps organizations diversify their workforce and build a base of young, skilled workers for the entire region.
Step Up has provided over 27,000 internships since 2003, yielding a competitive talent pipeline, a stronger economy and millions of dollars in wages for Step Up interns.
By 2023, our region is expected to face a workforce shortage of over 100,000 workers. Step Up is an opportunity to invest in the next generation. This isn't just the way we'll move one young person or organization forward - it's the way we'll lift up the entire community.
Throughout 2018, PPL expanded the Step Up program so participating students also receive school credit in addition to work experience.
PPL took the lead on redesigning the curriculum, as well as hiring and training Step Up trainers. PPL also coordinated the new summer Professional Development series for youth to refine their work readiness skills and reflect on their professional experiences.
As a result of this work, 477 youth earned high school credit for this pilot year in 2018.
We look forward to continuing this momentum as we add additional opportunities to earn high school credits in 2019 and beyond. We are dedicated to empowering our communities' youth and helping eliminate the choice many young people face between meaningful work experience and earning high school credit in the summer.
Thank you to our Step Up partner organizations and the City of Minneapolis for this prestigious award!