Mentors, instructors and employers joined the community, this week, to celebrate more than 50 young adults, who were taking a giant step towards financial independence and self-sufficiency.
The youth, Opportunities for a Better Tomorrow’s (OBT) most recent Young Adult Internship Program (YAIP) graduates, were honored Friday at an awards ceremony at the Bedford Presbyterian Church in Crown Heights.
Based in Williamsburg, Opportunities for a Better Tomorrow helps disadvantaged youth and adults through job training, academic reinforcement, improved life skills, job placement and support services. YAIP is its 14-week job readiness and paid internship program.
“Success doesn’t come easily for anyone and YAIP works to teach its trainees that a little extra effort such as these goes a long way,” said Chief Program Officer, Annie Norbeck.
A professional dress code and strong emphasis on punctuality are among the program’s strict requirements.
One participant, Quinnelle Randolph, who interned at Brooklyn Navy Yard and was recently hired as a full time employee at FSO Outsourcing Solutions spoke about how YAIP taught him lessons about himself as well as how to succeed in a career.
“Every day in the program I was learning new things about myself and what I wanted to do with my life,” he said. “I will never forget the most important lesson from my teacher Ms. Neverson, who said, ‘Don’t let your off day be anyone else’s on day’ meaning we are each responsible for our own success every single day.”
Colvin Grannum, President at Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration was the event’s featured speaker.
Awards were given out for achievements such as perfect attendance, exceptional trainee, most perseverance and best intern. Several worksites presented their interns with their own awards including the Weeks Heritage Museum and the Offices of Councilmembers Antonio Reynoso and Jumaane Williams.
“You should be very proud,” Norbeck said. “You’ve all finished this program – an important first step. Take everything you learned here and apply it to the next thing you do.”
For more information about OBT or the Young Adult Internship Program visit www.obtjobs.org.