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116 Indianapolis Jobs for America’s Graduates students prove employability skills to community leaders and employers at JAG Career Development Conference

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – February 11, 2020 – Today 116 Indianapolis high school juniors and seniors met at the Hilton Indianapolis Hotel & Suites for the regional Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) Career Development Conference. Each student utilized the employability skills they have learned in their JAG classrooms over the course of the past year, competing in challenges such as chapter marketing campaigns, launching entrepreneurship plans, providing creative solutions, demonstrating critical thinking and employability skills, and more.

“We are proud to partner with and host the JAG Career Development Conference,” said Joe Melton, General Manager at Hilton Indianapolis Hotel & Suites. “Our hotel is excited to be introducing young people to all that the hospitality industry has to offer through work experiences and job shadowing opportunities. The JAG Career Development Conference is one way that young people are able explore their skills and prepare for their future – and we are glad to play a role in that.”

The backbone behind JAG is preparing students for the workforce by introducing them to not only employability skills, but by introducing them to different industries, employers, and work experiences. The JAG Career Development Conference is an opportunity for students demonstrate their skills, with two individuals from each competition attending the State Career Development Conference next month. In addition to recognizing these students’ successes, six individuals were chosen as Outstanding Seniors, an award recognizing select high school seniors who have gone above and beyond in community involvement and are viewed as leaders among their peers.

“Before JAG I was very quiet and lacked basic skills that would prevent me from becoming successful,” said Zoey Lewis, Outstanding Senior from Indianapolis Metropolitan High School. “Now JAG has helped me prepare for my life during and after high school. It has developed me into a more equipped student by building my communication and leadership skills, so I am prepared for college and life after high school. I have been exposed to people who work in different career paths, received help throughout the college process, and built confidence in myself. As a first-generation college student, I’m not sure that I would have pushed myself to continue without the support of JAG.”

Even more than learning about employability skills, Zoey has become the JAG Career Association President and Valedictorian of her class. This opportunity provides stronger pathways for young people as they explore career opportunities and build confidence in who they are and what they can do.

“JAG helps students not only while they are in high school, but prepares them for what comes next,” said Erika Cheney, director of in-school youth at EmployIndy. “That is the vision behind the Career Development Conference – that students will be able to demonstrate their skills to prove to employers and themselves that they can do big things.”

A special recognition to our Gold Level Sponsor, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union 481 (IBEW Local 481). Thank you for your generous contribution and support of the Jobs for America’s Graduates program.