Director of Special Projects, National (Formerly Director of Outreach and Admissions, Chicago)
There are so many things I love about working at Year Up. I love the students that we work with; they are extremely motivated and I am inspired by them every day. I love the culture of the agency; we truly work hard and have fun. I love working for a non-profit that is evidenced based, results oriented, and achieves outcomes. The organization runs like a successful business, but the profit is the success of those we serve.
Every graduation when I reflect on how far the students have come in just one year, it solidifies why I work at Year Up. I get to see students from the beginning when they are barely making ends meet, living off public assistance, sometimes even homeless, and by the end of the year, they are walking into jobs earning livable wages at some of the nation’s top companies. This program has a true impact on individuals and families and it is amazing to see that in action.
Senior Director of Development, Boston
In some places I have worked, we are careful to highlight the success stories of the 5-10% who have excelled. We are careful to direct visitors to those successful students and veer them away from others. At Year Up, I can introduce a visitor to almost any student and know with confidence that the visitor will feel the power of Year Up. At Year Up, it’s normal, not exceptional, for a student to have a transformative, life-changing experience.
Site Leader, Bay Area (Formerly Business Communications Instructor)
The impact of my hard work is tangible and immediate. I have a front row seat to a performance of young people making the most of an amazing opportunity. All of my instructional, motivational, and facilitation skills are called upon each day.
Each time I receive an email from a student, intern, or alum thanking us for contributing to his or her success, it’s like a shot of adrenaline. Occasionally, I get a personal email thanking me for teaching a certain skill or for holding a student accountable. It reminds me of the importance of the more abstract job duties and motivates me to not shy away from a difficult conversation.
Associate Director of Corporate Relations, New York (Formerly National Development Coordinator)
I wanted to work at Year Up because it unites the corporate sector with the policy reform necessary within workforce development. Year Up’s investment strategy provides the next generation of leaders with real life training by industry experts. Many of the relationships that I have developed with my Year Up colleagues have become indispensable sources of respect and trust, both professionally and personally. There exists a bond beyond the extent of our work that forms the Year Up family. We work hard, but we play hard too, which contributes to the family feel at Year Up. Working at Year Up is truly a gift to one’s professional development.
At Year Up, the learning that happens with our young adults is a two way street. One of my first advisees had a challenging upbringing that required him to grow up sooner than he should have had to. Because of that, his resiliency was remarkable. It brought perspective to my own challenges and allowed me to see how manageable they were in light of what he had faced. The opportunity to learn something new, both from staff and students, presents itself every day.
Academic Director, Bay Area
As an educator, I often found myself challenged with issues that were outside of the education realm. When I found Year Up, I was excited to work with young adults who were eager to learn and chose to be a part of the program. I appreciate the idea of seeing immediate outcomes from my work and believe that the most successful people at Year Up are those who live out the mission – people who are truly committed to closing the Opportunity Divide and are able to creatively innovate to make that happen.