YouthWork Interns Shine Over Summer and Beyond
Fifty young people were hired this summer as part of the Durham YouthWork Internship Program, a partnership between the City, County and Durham Public Schools. Each had an opportunity to gain valuable work experience and develop skills at jobs with the City, County and various businesses in Durham. This year’s interns brought a high level of professionalism and dedication to their tasks. We interviewed two young people and their supervisors to get a sense of how the YouthWork program benefits both the students and the County:
Priscilla Garrett spent her internship writing software programs in the Information Services and Technology Department. The program she created is now being used by the County Manager and Board of County Commissioners to track requests from residents. Priscilla’s work was so exceptional that her supervisors, Mickey Mazarick and Steve Barden, asked her to stay on beyond the five-week duration of the program and would like to have her back again next year. Priscilla will major in computer science when she attends college, and says she hopes to have a career in Durham County Government one day.
Jalon Redmond, a rising junior at Northern High School, was commended by his supervisor, Carolyn Kreuger, for his work preparing materials for the Kids Voting initiative of Cooperative Extension. Director Delphine Sellars also praised Jalon for his dedication and willingness to take on any task. Jalon said the most important thing he learned while working at Durham County was that he has great focus and an ability to stick with a project when needed. These skills will be assets in any job he takes in the future.
With employees like Priscilla and Jalon, this was an outstanding year for the YouthWork program. The interns’ work was so strong that in addition to Priscilla, three other County YouthWork placements were asked to stay on beyond the end of the program: Tyrek Lofton, IS&T; Jordan Anderson, Veteran Services; and Brianna Head, City/County Planning. YouthWork places Durham youth ages 14 to 21 in jobs with the City, County and private employers. For more information about this joint initiative, visit the YouthWork website.