The HIRED! Apprenticeship Program, offered through Child, Youth & School Services, or CYSS, is now accepting applications for the next term that starts Sept. 22.
The HIRED! Apprenticeship Program is designed to prepare teenagers 15 – 18, for the workforce by placing them in apprenticeship positions with Family and Morale, Welfare & Recreation organizations on military installations.
Rosalie Oriz, Fort Huachuca’s HIRED! Program coordinator, explained, “It is considered a formal training program for Army teens, to give teenagers experience working, and to get workforce preparation for when they go out and get a real job.
“There are a lot of jobs where, even if they are minimum wage jobs, they want experienced people. A lot of times the teens have not had experience yet, so they are stuck. If they [work with the HIRED!
Program], they get the experience needed, and they are able to put this on their applications and resumes,” Ortiz continued.
Each term is 12 weeks long, with four terms offered each calendar year. However, an apprentice may only serve two terms per year.
In addition to time spent on the job, HIRED! apprentices are required to attend at least three training sessions per month. Training topics may include financial management, leadership skills, problem solving and other practical topics.
Natasha Upchurch, 15, currently works at Expanding Horizons Child Development Center, performing tasks such as gathering class ratios, filing, answering telephones and other duties.
Upchurch explained that she eventually wants to work with children full-time. Working at Expanding Horizons, along with babysitting outside of the program, Upchurch is provided with the hands-on experience and training needed for careers involving children.
To complete a term, the apprentice must commit to 15 hours a week, or 180 hours a term, to include the required training hours. Depending on the apprentice’s age, the Fair Labor Standards Act places certain stipulations on the length of time worked each day.
Upon completion of their first term, each teen will receive a $500 cash reward. With each consecutive term completed, the cash award amount increases.
Following in her older brother’s footsteps, Ashten Kinslow, 15, has spent this term apprenticing at Jeannie’s Diner. For the last two months, she has honed her customer service and money management skills.
“The HIRED! Program is a lot of fun and it’s a great learning experience,” she said.
At the end of the term, Kinslow intends to put her cash reward into her college fund.
There are a number of work sites available where teens can gain on-the-job experience.
Some examples are:
- Child, Youth & School Services
- Expanding Horizons Child Development Center
- Jeannie’s Diner
- Morale, Welfare and Recreation Rents
- Desert Lanes Bowling Center
- Barnes Filed House and Eifler Fitness Center
- Arts and Crafts Center
The program is open to teens who are registered with CYS Services and hold a 2.0 grade point average or better.
Available slots are filled quickly, and are provided on a first-come, first-served basis. Applications can be picked up at the Middle School and Teen Center, Building 49013.
For more information, contact Rosalie Ortiz, HIRED! Apprenticeship Program coordinator, 533.8168.