Upstate Circle of Friends

Job Readiness Training Internship Program

Upstate Circle of Friends now offers Job Readiness Training using the Tackling Tough Skills curriculum. This program will is a great opportunity to expose your teenagers to the workforce and be compensated for their efforts as well!!!

Mission Statement

The mission of the Job Readiness Training (JRT) program is to improve the overall functioning of at-risk high school students at home, in school, and in the community. The goals and objectives of the JRT is to:
  • Increase the employability of at-risk high school students.
  • Improve school attendance and academic performance, decrease school dropout rates, and increase the likelihood of high school completion and enrollment in secondary education or the military.
  • Reduce the recidivism rate for students served by the program that are involved with DJJ by preventing further delinquency and/or violence.


Curriculum Topics

Preparing to enter the workforce
Interviewing Skills
Job Searching Skills
Resume Writing
Problem Solving Skills
Coping with Anger
Listening Skills
Oral Communication Skills
Resolving Conflict
Assertiveness
Resisting Peer Pressure
Working as a Team

Download the JRT Application Learn More About JRT

Overview of the Program

JRT is an employability skills training program for at-risk high school students. The JRT sites can be located in conjunction with DJJ's Teen After School Centers (TASCs). TASCs are daily after-school programs based in local churches, community centers, and other public buildings across the state that are staffed by employees and volunteers with a heart for students. These centers serve students in need of additional structure and assistance and are designed to reduce the likelihood that program participants become involved in the juvenile justice system. TASCs provide supervision, homework assistance, structured daily activities, service coordination, and resource development for at-risk students and their families.

The JRT program provides career exposure, and a community internship/work experience component for at risk high school students. Each JRT site will operate the program after school during the spring and fall for 10 weeks after school (subject to approval by SCDJJ) . The 10 week programs will include 15 hours of Job Readiness Skills Training, for which the youth can earn a stipend of $7.25 per hour for successful attendance and participation in the training. 20 youth per site will attend the program three days per week after school for the first four weeks of the program, where they will complete the first 9 hours of training, and then once per week for the final 6 weeks of the program where they will complete their final six hours of training .

After successfully completing the first four weeks of training, youth will begin working at their 40 hour community internships where they will earn $7.25 per hour for each hour of internship. It is expected that the youth will work at their internships two days per week for approximately three to four hours per day over the six week period. The JRT coordinator will visit students at their internships at least once every two weeks to assess their progress, provide support and to help youth and /or employers resolve any problems that may arise.

Each JRT will provide services to juveniles between the ages of 14-17, who are considered at-risk youth or under probation or parole supervision for nonviolent offenses. Each JRT site will also provide programmatic services to encourage teamwork and build self-confidence and self-esteem. Furthermore, these sites will conduct structured workshops with the overall goal of the participant advancing vocationally upon completion of the required program timeframe.

The JRT sites will establish a summer program that will serve up to 20 high school students per site and operate for five weeks beginning in June and ending in July. The summer program begins with five days (20 hours) of employability skills training for which students can earn a stipend of $7.25 per hour for successful attendance and participation. After successfully completing the training, students begin an 80 hour community internship where they will earn a stipend of $7.25 per hour while gaining real life work experience. Youth will be scheduled for 20 hours per week at their internships over a four week period to complete their 80 internship hours.

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