Philadelphia’s Summer Jobs program is off to a good start, according to city officials.
Mayor Michael Nutter says more than 7,600 students are working summer jobs this year, a major improvement over a year ago.
“Summer jobs provide young people with valuable work experience, put money in their pockets,” Nutter said. “Equally important, at least, they teach them the value of a dollar and prepare them for higher education and the 21st century workforce.”
Finding more work for kids helps build a world-class economy in the city, according to Stacy Holland of the Philadelphia Youth Network.
“The only way we can do that is to make sure we have educated and prepared young people to transition into that economy,” Holland said.
Central High student Shira Smillie says working opens new opportunities.
“These experiences have given me the confidence to go into any setting and speak to anyone,” Smillie said.
Nutter had issued a challenge to employers to offer 10,000 summer jobs to Philadelphia youth, so the program fell short of the mark. Still, at 7,600, there are 1,000 more young people employed this summer than last year.