Providing youth skills for better financial futures
It was a classic case of bad news/worse news. A staggering 23 percent unemployment rate for French youth age 18-25 as well as a bad economy and fierce competition for jobs primed this group for long-term difficulties finding work and pay differentials designed to last years into their careers. The IESEG School of Management Enactus team wanted to give this population reason for hope and a fighting chance at becoming gainfully employed.
Recognizing that less-educated youth were the most at risk of becoming a lost generation in the workforce, the team worked with a second chance school in Lille to identify the student’s main areas of educational difficulty as well as their primary obstacles to employability. From this, they personalized courses and partnered with area human resources associations to assist the students with job and internship research and writing cover letters and resumes. In addition, they brought in job coaches and former students who had similar experiences to provide seminars and advice. As a final step, recruitment forums were organized.
In all, more than 1,500 hours of training was provided, seven job interview simulations were created and multiple recruiting events were held. The “Keep Empowering Youth” project resulted in 60 students finding an internship or job. To further save a generation from becoming lost to unemployment, the team continues to increase their project partnerships and plans are under way to bring the project to six additional second chance schools in the region.