Meet our Specialist of the Month winner for September, Cortney Sanders, an out-of-school specialist, from Upper Peninsula Michigan Works! Cortney has been a Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates (JMG) specialist for five years and has made a big difference in the lives of the youth she serves. We asked several questions so you can get to know her better…
Why did you become a JMG Specialist?
To make a difference and use my past experiences to help others be successful.
What inspires you about your job?
The youth. I learn more from them each year than they do from me; grit, determination, resilience, and patience.
Recall a favorite memory about being a specialist. (an event, a youth accomplishment, etc.)
There are so many it is hard to choose one....
Legislative Day 2023: The Ice Storm
Carter and Cole, two of my youth, got an experience they will never forget. Despite the horrible weather and cancellations, the Youth Solutions team made sure our youth were still able to enjoy their time at the Capitol Building and meet with legislators that were still available. Overall, the youth had a great time and it was well worth the trip!
What is one of the greatest challenges you face in your job?
Helping youth realize their potential.
What is one of the greatest highlights/joys of your job?
Having the ability to do something I love everyday with an amazing team of educators behind me each step of the way!
Why do you think JMG is so important for youth?
It allows them to become part of something bigger. It's an encouraging person in your life. Someone in their corner telling them they CAN do it. Helping them realize their potential and giving them resources they need to be successful in this crazy world we are living in right now.
Share your hobbies, do you have any pets, what do you like to do in your spare time, etc.
2 dogs: Jaeger (German Shepherd) and Marlo (Australian Shepherd/Catahoula Leopard dog mix)
I enjoy camping with my family and spending time outdoors as much as possible in the spring/summer/fall. I hibernate in the winter.
Nominations are open to ALL, including our employer partners! If you know a phenomenal specialist, we encourage you to nominate them as our October Specialist of the Month.
Nominate a specialist who deserves to be recognized, here.