JIS News

A total of 600 students, 300 from St. James and 300 from Hanover, are to benefit under the 2007 National Youth Service (NYS) Summer Employment Programme. The recruitment and orientation process within the region has been completed, with the next step being the placement of the beneficiaries in a working environment for a three-week period, for which they will be remunerated.
The programme is aimed at assisting needy high school and tertiary level students in raising funds through summer employment, to assist in their back-to- school expenses.
According to Corporate Services Manager for the NYS in St. James and Hanover, Omar Steer, applications were received from over 1,200 young persons, but limited resources has restricted the employment of all the applicants. He said that it is hoped that over time, the programme could be expanded to include all applicants.
Speaking with JIS News on June 27, following two days of orientation for the selected applicants in Montego Bay, Mr. Steer said the programme would be implemented in two phases this year, with the first phase involving the placement of the first batch of students on July 9, and the second phase involving an August placement. He commended businesses in the private sector that are joining with government entities in assisting the programme by accepting students for work, adding that if more corporate entities would participate in the programme, it would mean more opportunities for the young persons. “The students have expressed over the years, that the programme is very good, and it has helped them to gain valuable work experience. Each year there is an expression that the programme needs to attract and seek to hire more students, and that is the reason why we have moved from 150 in St. James last year to 300 this year,” he said. Mr. Steer said that he has been receiving comments from employers about the programme, with some quite satisfied about the quality of students they received, while others were not so satisfied.
“What we try to share with the employers is that these are participants who they should assist with getting a better feel of what the working world is all about. They have to be a part of the grooming process, and a part of the development process,” he pointed out.
He explained that the participants are encouraged to “put their best foot forward,” while making use of the opportunity being offered to them through the programme.

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