Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman issued a challenge to area businesses: Offer more employment opportunities for teens and young adults.
Coleman says there are more than 20,000 people between the ages of 16 and 24 who are out of school and out of work and that must change.
The City of Columbus, along with Central Ohio Workforce Investment Corporation (COWIC), will work to identify more employment opportunities to help young people find full-time, part-time or seasonal employment.
The Youth Employment Challenge will encourage employers to fill seasonal, full-time or part-time positions with Columbus’ youth.
COWIC, which operates the Ohio Means Jobs Center for Columbus and Franklin County, says as of Wednesday its received 4929 applications for its S.O.A.R. Hire! summer job initiative. S.O.A.R. hire is a job program for teens and young adults between the ages of 14 – 24 in Columbus and all of Franklin County. The summer jobs last eight weeks. So far, COWIC has identified 1,200 job.
Mayor Coleman, and COWIC, said the Youth Employment Challenge will help them identify more jobs to fill the gap.
The Columbus Partnership and Columbus Chamber have already committed to the Youth Employment Challenge by recruiting more companies from each of their memberships to join the effort. Experience Columbus, the Greater Columbus Arts Council, the Labor community and the Human Service Chamber are also asking their constituencies and members to join the effort.
Columbus Youth Employment Challenge