Mayor Sets Goal of 2,500 Summer Jobs for Youth

February 6, 2015

Mayor Greg Fischer today challenged businesses and organizations to put 2,500 young people in jobs this summer by supporting his SummerWorks program.

“Successful business people often want to give back to their community in ways that are meaningful and lasting,” Fischer said.  “While there are many opportunities to contribute, there are few as impactful and far reaching as giving a young person a positive start in the workforce.”

Fischer urged every company or organization to hire at least one youth for a summer job. Companies already participating in SummerWorks this year include Norton Healthcare, Thornton’s, Marks Feed Store, Louisville Zoo, GlowTouch Technologies and Kentucky Kingdom.

Responding to the elimination of federal funding for summer jobs, Fischer launched the Mayor’s SummerWorks program in 2011, shortly after taking office.  In its first year, the effort placed about 200 young people in summer jobs.  In summer 2014, jobs were found for more than 2,100 youth. The SummerWorks program was recognized by the U.S. Conference of Mayors in 2014 as one of the nation’s best summer jobs programs for young people.

“Louisville’s SummerWorks program has served as a model for youth employment efforts nationwide, and I look forward to another summer of success for the young people who take advantage of this opportunity,” Congressman John Yarmuth said. “I also join Mayor Fischer in urging area businesses to join this partnership and help give young Louisvillians the confidence that comes with real work experience.”

Michael Gritton, executive director of KentuckianaWorks, said the Mayor’s SummerWorks team will work with employers who have summer positions to make sure they are matched with the job candidate who best meets their needs.

“If you don’t need summer help but want to support the program, a $2,500 donation will subsidize an employment opportunity for a youth and also efforts to give our disadvantaged young people basic workforce skills and job coaching,” Gritton said.

Young people wanting summer work and employers looking to hire youth should participate in the Mayor’s Youth Opportunity Showcase on Feb. 14. The event connects  young people seeking summer work with employers who are hiring.  In addition, youth ages 16-21 can explore internships and volunteer opportunities at the event.  Representatives from local colleges, universities and career training programs also will assist with career planning.

The Showcase is 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 14, at the Kentucky International Convention Center, Exhibit Hall 1 A/B, in downtown Louisville.  The event is free to both young people and employers.  Free parking is available at the 4th Street Live Garage, 425 S. 5th Street; and Skips Lot on Liberty between 2nd and 3rd Streets.

More than 35 companies with nearly 1,000 summer jobs to fill will participate including CVS, Kentucky Kingdom, Thornton’s, Circle K, UPS, State Fair Board, Republic Bank and others. Youth planning to attend the showcase are strongly encouraged to register by Feb.11 with KentuckianaWorks at apply for jobs at the showcase, attendees should dress for an interview, bring identification – preferably a driver’s license and Social Security card – and have several copies of their resumes to leave with potential employers.

For more information about the showcase, including an exhibitor application for free booth space, and the SummerWorks program, call (502) 574-4657. 

The Mayor’s Youth Opportunity Showcase is sponsored by Louisville Metro Government, KentuckianaWorks, Kentucky Career Center and Kentucky Youth Career Center.