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Meet Our Youth

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They inspire us every day; they are the heartbeat of our programs; 

OUR YOUTH. 

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Youth and Alumni of the Year

Every year, three outstanding youth from our premier program, Jobs for Michigan's Graduates (JMG), are recognized for their leadership skills. Two current program participants and one alumni receive this annual recognition for their success and accomplishments in the program and beyond. 

Year - Name - JMG Program  

2015 - Le'Trece Gonzalez - Woodcreek Achievement Center

2016 - Luke Wagner - Kalamazoo RESA

2016 - Takyeshia Spicer - Detroit Employment Solutions

2017 - Daniell Doctor - JMG-LEAP

2018 - Natasha (Rzanca) Terrell - Gwinn High School

2018 - DeAnthony Purnell - Flint Southwestern

2019 - Chloressa Wren - Northwestern High School

2019 - Lewis Williams - Cody Academy of Public Leadership

2019 - Caitlin Steele - Hartford High School

2019 - Tamia Clay - Benton Harbor High School

2020 - Juwan Trainer - Ingham County Jail

2020 - Cheyenne McMillion - Kalamazoo County

2020 - Kyra Gibson - Marquette Alger Technical Middle College

2021 - Melanie Gunn - Michigan Works! Southwest

2021 - Amari McKinney - Bridge Academy

2021 - Crystal Steele - Hartford High School

2022 - Delann Pillivant - Pershing High School

2022 - Samantha Finch - Marquette-Alger Technical Middle College

2022 - Irais Cortez - Hartford High School

2023 - Brooke Modro - Hartford High School

2023 - Saylar Busher - Bridge Academy of Southwest Michigan

2023 - Lailah Smith - Downriver Community Conference

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Where are they now?

Jakya Smith

JMG Class of 2021 at Pershing High School

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If you could give someone thinking about joining JMG one piece of advice, what would it be?

DO IT! JMG is a life changing experience that will boost your confidence. You may be able to do a lot more with JMG under your belt.

Uplifted Youth


Coffee with a Purpose 

Raising the Youth Voice

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Many of our youth have taken the opportunity to be involved in our virtual conversations, Coffee with a Purpose. By giving youth this platform and encouraging them to use their voice for good, we get insider information directly from the youth we serve about topics that matter to them.

05/16/23 - Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and YOUth Part 2 Marquette Alger RESA

Rose Syers

James Dusette

Sage Pfaffle

02/16/23 - Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and YOUth Part 1 at the Bridge Academy of Southwest Michigan

Za'Indya Street 

Ian Watson 

Jasmine Harris-Branscumb

Owen Hamlett

Zakari (Zack) Morris 

Jaylen Banister

Brooke Triplett

10/20/22 - YOUth and the Future of Careers in Energy

Lewis Williams, DESC

Seth Wilson - Networks Northwest

Zuberi Spencer - GST Michigan Works!

Edrecee Taylor - GST Michigan Works!

05/12/22 - Youth Discuss Mental Health and the Impact of Social Emotional Learning

Lydia Fraser - MATMC

Hannah Wyman - West Michigan Works!

Mani Mesh - Great Lakes Bay Michigan Works!

02/16/22 - Change Makers: Empowering YOUth through Civic Engagement

​Jairo Lopez - Youth Solutions

Christian Dunn - GST Michigan Works!

Tyjah Covington - Youth Solutions

10/06/21 - Unique Opportunities in Nontraditional Careers: A Youth Discussion

Cheyenne Holcomb - UP Michigan Works!

Isabelle Bernard - UP Michigan Works!

LaZae Mosely - DESC

05/27/21 - Mental Health Awareness: A Youth Perspective

Hannah Wyman - West Michigan Works! 

Chelsea Smith - Great Lakes Bay Michigan Works!

Christian Dunn - GST Michigan Works!

Amari McKinney - Michigan Works! Berrien Cass Van Buren

03/23/21 - The Pandemic's Effect on Youth Disengagement from Education and Employment

Juwan Trainor - Capital Area Michigan Works!

Antane Hayes - DESC

02/08/21- Youth Leadership Development and Civic Engagement

Crystal Steel - Youth Solutions

Nolan Henson - GST Michigan Works!

Kaitlyn Delong - Youth Solutions

11/10/20 - Striving for Racial Equity: Youth Call to Action

TeKeirdra Masters - Youth Solutions

Delann Pillivant - DESC

09/30/20 - Striving for Racial Equity: Youth Voice on Education and Employment

Karla Robles - Youth Solutions

Julius Draughan - DESC

Avery Birch - SEMCA

8/13/20 - Striving for Racial Equity: Youth Perspectives, Concerns, and Calls to Action 

Tamia Clay - Youth Soutions

Mikya Coleman - SEMCA

David Carter - SEMCA

06/24/20 - COVID-19: The Pandemic's Impact on Michigan Youth

Kyra Gibson - UP Michigan Works!

Delann Pillivant - DESC

Michael Kirby - Youth Solutions

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Stay Connected

Check out some of the ways our youth can get involved and stay connected- even after graduation!

Teamwork

Youth Spotlight

Attending college classes as a high school student and speaking about my experiences in public — it’s scary, but my Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates experiences prepared me for it. Being a female in a male-dominated field could be intimidating, but with more young ladies as mentors and apprentices, it’s less scary. It’s now my reality and my goal.

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Cheyenne Holcomb

Negaunee High School and Marquette Alger Technical Middle College

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Cardaja Harkins

Ecourse Community High School

JMG has meant a great deal to me. It has taught me so much about my schooling and has also lead me on the right path to my future. 

Career Development Conference 

Winners

The Career Development Conference (CDC) is Youth Solutions’ annual event where youth have the opportunity to showcase the skills they have learned throughout the year in the Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates program. Check out the first, second and third place 2023 Chapter Marketing winners below. 

  • 1st Place - Windover Warriors, Windover High School

  • 2nd Place - Bridge Academy of Southwest Michigan

  • 3rd Place - Together We Can!, Hartford High School

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2023 First Place Chapter Marketing Winners

Congratulations to our 2023 Chapter Marketing winners! Their passion for JMG truly showed through their talent and creativity. Watch the 1st place video, “Windover Warriors” submitted by our youth from Windover High School!

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