Picente: Summer Youth Employment Program Plans Work Readiness Day at MVCC on July 6th

          Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente, Jr. today announced that more than 500 Oneida County teen-agers will participate in a Work Readiness Day of activities designed to help them get the most out of their Summer Youth Employment Program work experience.

           The event will be held on Monday, July 6th at the Utica campus of Mohawk Valley Community College. Activities will begin at 9 a.m. and run through 2 p.m., Picente said.
           “Because of the impact of federal stimulus dollars, as well as support for Summer Youth Employment from Governor Paterson and the State Legislature, we will be offering work experience for 500 to 600 youth this summer in one of the largest programs we have operated in recent years,” said Picente. “To help young people make the most of this work experience, we are offering a day to help them prepare for work, prepare for careers, and focus on the future.”
            Picente said that a number of county departments and community partners will be presenting information to the program’s participants during the day. Exhibits and displays at the event include:
            New York State Department of Labor: The state will be using a computer lab at the college to offer SYEP participants an introduction to CareerZone, an innovative online career exploration and planning system designed especially for today's high-tech youth. CareerZone presents current and relevant occupational and labor market Information on 800 occupations. Links to college exploration and planning resources help youth begin their life/work journey.
            MVCC: MVCC will provide youth with information about careers, financial aid, campus tours and work readiness preparation. “MVCC has been preparing the workforce of our region for more than 60 years,” said Picente. “Work Readiness Day expands this long-time partnership to help our young people look at the college as a stepping-stone to the future.”
            Oneida County STOP-DWI: STOP-DWI will have an exhibit that includes fatal vision goggles. Fatal vision goggles are a training tool used to vividly demonstrate the concept of impairment and the dangers of impaired driving.  Students will have to opportunity to see first hand what is it is like to have their vision impaired while trying to perform simple tasks. 
           The Oneida County Sheriff’s Office: The Sheriff’s Office will outline career opportunities in law enforcement and corrections and also explain to youth how criminal records from offenses committed as a youth can impact career opportunities
           Insight House: Insight House, the region’s leading substance abuse agency, will have information and staff there to focus on prevention of drug use and abuse.
           Mohawk Valley EDGE: EDGE will offer a presentation on regional economic opportunities and careers.
           Renewable Energy: Morrisville State College will offer information about its Regional Renewable Energy Training Center, which is helping youth and adults from across Central New York receive the education and training they need for jobs in the green economy.
          “This summer opens the door for youth to learn what work is all about, to learn some lessons about what employers will want, to learn what types of skills youth will need to achieve success, and to use this summer as a first step on the ladder of success,” Picente said. “Work Readiness Day helps out youth as they begin their summer and also helps them look beyond summer and beyond high school to the careers they can have.”
         Oneida County Workforce Development Director David Mathis said that a few slots still exist for community groups or other agencies wishing to participate in Work Readiness Day. Groups that want to make presentations or provide exhibits should contact the Oneida County Office of Workforce Development at 798-5908.