For someone in their twenties, landing a first job can be an intimidating prospect.
“The challenge for me was figuring out what job I wanted to do,” said Elisha Hawkins, receptionist at Starbucks San Francisco Regional Office. “I needed help determining what my passion was and how I could use that to be successful in a job.”
Hawkins is a former participant of MatchBridge, a United Way of the Bay Area (UWBA) program that helps connect young people with employment opportunities and prepare them to enter the workforce. Starbucks collaborated with UWBA to support the San Francisco Summer Jobs+ Youth Resource Fair as part of Global Month of Service.
Each April Starbucks invites partners and customers to join together in community service projects around the world. This year there’s an emphasis on Global Month of Service volunteer efforts that support Opportunity Youth – young people ages 16-24 who are not employed or in school. Starbucks plans to hire 10,000 Opportunity Youth by the year 2018.
On April 11, more than 100 Starbucks baristas, store managers, and regional leaders led young people through career workshops, including customer service and personal branding. The instruction included mock interviews and a job fair.
“Often, young people are very timid and shy when they first come in,” said Daniel Lee, a Starbucks district manager in San Francisco. He’s spearheaded Starbucks involvement with the United Way program. “By the end of the first day alone, they walk out with more confidence.”
The Youth Resource Fair leads youth to summer jobs and as well as full-time positions.
“We hired 25 youth on the spot through this event,” Lee said. “Many of these youth will work full-time in the summer, and then flex during the school year. Often times those who go away to college, transfer to a Starbucks nearby.”
In addition to participating in the Youth Resource Fair, Starbucks will work with UWBA to host a career day at the Starbucks San Francisco regional office later this month. Each quarter throughout the year, Starbucks conducts smaller-scale hiring fairs with the UWBA as well.
“One of the unique things about working with Starbucks is they offer a full cycle of support,” said Sarah Burton, Director of Engagement & Special Projects at United Way of the Bay Area. “They will volunteer in any way and provide professional development for young people and staff. They also place low-income and underserved youth for actual jobs and promote them through the ranks to provide high-quality careers.”
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