Program provides youth an opportunity to join the workforce


Teens around Kern County are learning to make smart choices when it comes to housing, food, school and child care. The program organized through the boys and girls club is getting young people ready to enter the workforce.

Jason Powers of Bakersfield High School already has plans for the summer.

"I actually want to get a job with PG&E. I think that would be amazing. It would open up my opportunities because I do want to go into an engineering department," he said.

Close to three hundred teens from around Kern County are getting work force skills they normally wouldn't get inside a classroom.

"It's very valuable. If you actually get a summer internship with a job, the opportunities open up, very wide and even if you don’t get the job you get to learn how to make a resume and learn how to get interviewed and everything to do and say to actually obtain a job,” said Powers.

Leaders with the boys and girls club are selecting 55 students to take on internships at businesses around the community.

"It's very important especially for teens to get that experience because sometimes people don't hire teens with no experience and they will get that experience through this program," said program specialist, Marshall Johnson with the Boys and Girls Club.

Through games and activities, teens learn about making choices in the areas of housing, insurance, food, clothing, plus transportation, child care and entertainment.  They're being taught how it all affects their monthly budget.

"I think children right now should start thinking about it, it something that is going to come up inevitable," said Kiranjit Rai of South Bakersfield High School.

The summer jobs program is funded through PG&E, which not helps students gain experience, but allows companies to find hard working employees.

"I got to have my own intern and she was a blessing to our office and she got to help us do some of the little stuff we don't always get done and she was such a phenomenally trained employee that we kept her own throughout the year," said Mikin McClanahan of the Kern County Builders Exchange.


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