We know that youth gain important skills and learn new behaviors during the course of their YouthWorks internships. We know this because every year youth and worksite mentors tell us about the great progress that interns have made at work.
For 2010-2011, we are striving to measure that growth, to understand how individual participants and the entire class of interns grow over the course of their YouthWorks experience.
We are currently meeting with youth and worksite mentors to document each youth’s starting point. During these baseline assessment meetings, we will document each intern’s current level of mastery of specific tasks and technologies, as well as their mastery of the following YouthWorks work readiness competencies: Workplace communication, Collaboration, Adaptability, Productivity, Responsibility and Effort, and Initiative
Using the information from these baseline assessments, each intern will create an Individualized Development Plan (IDP) to complement their YouthWorks experience. These IDPs will help youth consider their long-term goals and then create plans for the year which support their progress towards these goals. Each youth will establish career exploration and preparedness goals, educational goals, and work readiness goals.
Our understanding of each youth’s starting point and goals for the year will enable worksite mentors and staff to better plan for a successful year. At the middle of the program, we will re-assess progress and adjust goals for milestones that have been met. At the end of the year, we should all have a much clearer understanding of what we’ve collectively accomplished this year.