Young people visualize their potential at an in-person event and awards ceremony

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On April 29, Youth Solutions hosted the 12th Annual Career Development Conference (CDC) in person at the Lansing Center, hosting the 124 Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates (JMG) program. Young people from across Michigan traveled to the state capital to showcase their workplace skills and knowledge through career-focused competitions.

The day culminated in individual and group events, networking with each other and business leaders, creating a truly immersive experience for young people in Michigan to envision their future careers. For many young people in attendance, it was the first time they had been in a city and interviewed young people and business leaders from outside their home town.

“The CDC was a great experience for me to put into practice what I learned at JMG. Being in a professional environment was something I had never done before, but JMG gave me the confidence that I needed,” said Lamont Hawkins, a student at Bridge Academy in Southwest Michigan. “I was inspired by other young people in attendance and enjoyed being part of something bigger (than me). ).”

The conference ended with a luncheon and an awards ceremony. Keynote speaker Dr. Joe Johnson energized the audience by sharing his story. His energetic speech strongly encouraged young people to think, act and live with purpose and intention. The awards ceremony recognized not only the winners of the competition, but also the annual Youth and Alumni of the Year awards, a nomination-based award given to young people who demonstrate leadership, exceptional character and commitment to the values ​​of JMG. Winners include:

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Out of School Model Youth of the Year: Samantha Finch, Marquette Alger Technical Middle College.
In School Model Youth of the Year: Irais Cortez, of Hartford High School.
Alumnus of the Year: Delann Pillavent, 2020 valedictorian from Pershing High School in Detroit, who is studying engineering at the University of Michigan on a full scholarship.
Winners by participation in the various event categories include:

Creative problem solving:
Eaton County SOO
Luis-Miguel Rivera, Ethan Dawson, Hanalethia Garivay
Marquette Technical College Algiers
Tyler McAllister, Persephone Holcomb
Lansing School District
Jacob Miller, Gavin Elanbaas, Javier Ruperto, Donnie (Adam) Dominion
JMG Bowl:
Hartford High School
Andres Cardoso, Jairo Lopez, Emily Muller, Yisell Gonzalez
Michigan works! South West
Paris-Fluker, Aleeiah Cole, Devon VanAmayden, LaKavia West-Martinez, Jaleya Moore
Marquette Technical College Algiers
Samantha Finch, Samantha Fortunado, Matthew Basal
Chapter Marketing Contest:
Bridge Academy of Southwest Michigan
James Anthony, Lamont Hawkins, Tijuan Campbell, Jamir Banister, Jaylen Banister, Za’india Street, Brooke Triplett, Jamar Bledsoe, Aidan Low, Ian Watson, Jasmine Laylin, Lindsey Collins
Hartford Giggle Squad, Hartford High School
Eddanie Flores, David Martinez, Maritza Ramon, Janet Francisco, Josaleen Ponce, Rachel Keifer, Biance Lopez
Hartford Bilingual, Hartford High School
Jairo Lopez, Emily Muller, Anderson Pineda, Allan Zaldivar-Vega, Suli Sinai Zavaleta, Sebastian Gonzalez, Sontee Mendoza, Leah Fish, Andres Quiroz, Brenda Parra
Interview Skills:
Saba Khan, Michigan works! South West
Jasmin Garcia, Hartford High School
Jabriana Taylor-Garrett, Pershing High School
Career preparation:
Elizabeth Garrett, Casman Academy
Sereta Fager, College of Northwestern Michigan
Tayeful Islam, Hamtramck high school
The event was made possible in part by all of the volunteer judges, Michigan State Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity, Consumers Energy Foundation, Michigan College Access Network, DCI Marketing, Southeast Michigan Construction Academy, Lyons Industries , Michigan Infrastructure & Transportation Association. , Spectrum Health and Michigan Associated Builders and Contractors. Additionally, Michigan Works! Partners play a key role in the work of Youth Solutions.

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