Career Exploration Series at Boys & Girls Clubs of Long Beach Celebrates First Year

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After a year of introducing youth to future careers, the Leadership Long Beach (LLB) Class of 2011 celebrates the completion of its inaugural Career Exploration Series with the Boys & Girls Club of Long Beach on Wednesday, July 18th beginning at 5:30 p.m. The Dean A. Eastman/Fairfield Boys & Girls Club of Long Beach at the corner of Del Amo and Atlantic Avenue will host the celebration event which will spotlight the motivated and informed youth, their parents, presenters, LLB alumni and Boys & Girls Club staff for their efforts over the past year.

Since June 2011, approximately 25 teens assembled on the last Wednesday of the month to interact and learn from Long Beach professionals in the careers of the arts, public safety, healthcare business management, education, and engineering at the Dean A. Eastman/Fairfield Boys & Girls Club in North Long Beach. During the year, the youth have interacted with a police lieutenant, fire battalion chief, FBI special agent, doctor, stroke specialist, shopping mall manager, insurance agent, owners of a sports and fitness academy, artist, arts coordinator, theatre arts director, Boeing engineers, and a high school principal. In their sessions, the youth heard the passions and motivations that led the professionals to their career choices, learned how much college or specialized training different jobs required and worked some instruments in a police car and fire engine. Additionally, they were able to role-play as shopping mall managers, create a theatre play with actors, set designers, directors, producers, and create model bridges with a foot of tape and straws.

“We were glad we were able to provide positive learning activities for the youth and also share our enthusiasm for our careers with them,” explains Justin Hardy, a graduate of the LLB Institute Class of 2011 and one of the members who helped spearhead this project with his classmate, Oscar Hernandez, Director of Operations for the Boys & Girls Club of Long Beach. Hardy states, “We have a vast resource of alumni in Leadership Long Beach from a variety of careers, professions and business networks in order to create a well-rounded program of information and interest so that every youth can get some practical knowledge out of each session.”

The Career Exploration program is a part of the LLB Institute Class of 2011 class project, which partnered with the Boys & Girls Club of Long Beach to help enhance their mentorship program by creating a once-a-month career exploration sessions on topics that would benefit teens at the club. The idea behind the project was to create a sustainable partnership with a local non-profit organization for 12 months and utilize the resources from the Leadership Long Beach alumni to provide positive role models and mentoring discussion opportunities for the teens. The topics were selected based on a combined survey given to the teens at the club and data from Pacific Gateway Workforce Investment Network.

The celebration begins at 5:30 p.m. with a brief synopsis of the past 12 sessions and presentations from Boys & Girls Club branch director, Duncan Smith, and a Boys & Girls Club teen. Light refreshments will be provided.

For more information about the Career Exploration Series Celebration, contact Oscar Cosby at 562-997-9194 or o.cosby@leadershiplb.org.

About Leadership Long Beach
Since its beginning in 1989, Leadership Long Beach has been dedicated to developing and engaging principled leaders to strengthen the community through its core programs – Institute, Executive Quick Start and Youth Leadership Long Beach. Leadership Long Beach was founded by some of our community’s most influential and visionary stakeholders. These founders envisioned the formation of a civic improvement program that would serve the community by educating and motivating leaders on issues important to the future and sustainability of our city. A corresponding purpose was to create a network of knowledgeable and informed community leaders who would support each other as they continued in their professional and personal areas of endeavor.

About Boys & Girls Club of Long Beach

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Long Beach is committed to serving less advantaged youth of the community by utilizing programs and services that will preserve and enhance the moral, social, mental, and physical development of its membership. The Clubs help youth realize their potential for growth and development through self-empowerment. Their mission is to enable all young people, especially the disadvantaged and underrepresented of our community, to realize their full potential as caring, responsible and productive citizens.

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