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Business Volunteers Needed to Help Shape the Next Generation of New Jersey’s Workforce

Business volunteers play a critical role in the success of the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s programs and the NJCCF actively seeks corporate involvement on a statewide and local level with the Jobs for New Jersey’s Graduates program. Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) is a state-based national non-profit organization dedicated to preventing dropouts among young people who are most at-risk. In more than three decades of operation, JAG has delivered consistent, compelling results – helping more than one million young people stay in school through graduation, pursue postsecondary education, and secure quality entry-level jobs leading to career advancement opportunities.

In New Jersey, companies and independent volunteers can share their time and talents locally or through statewide activities that include:

  • Volunteer judges for statewide career development conference. This conference takes place in the spring each year and provides all JNJG students an opportunity to engage in friendly competition to showcase what they have learned throughout the year.
     
  • Adult mentors for students. Volunteers can work with small groups of students either at their own facility or on-site at their local JNJG program. Adult mentors reinforce the support of at-risk students and influence young lives in positive ways. It is an opportunity for young adults to develop a trusting relationship with an adult outside their immediate comfort zone and to engage in candid conversations about planning for the future and workforce expectations.
     
  • Guest speakers in local JNJG programs. Volunteers coordinate with local JAG Specialists to present topics of interest to students ranging from workforce expectations, job interview skills, dressing for success, career pathways, and resume development.
     
  • Provide job shadowing or internship experiences to JNJG students. JNJG students are always looking for ways to further develop their marketable skills.  Having the opportunity to shadow seasoned employees or participate in a work-based experience will help these students hone their skills.
     
  • Give preferential consideration of JNJG student applications for employment. Companies that have worked with Jobs for America's Graduates students across the country have grown to realize that these students are well-prepared for the workforce and are “hungry” to prove themselves and showcase their employability skills.  Therefore, many companies around the country, as well as AT&T and Xerox in NJ, have agreed to devise systems to identify JAG students through their job application system in an effort to give these candidates special consideration.
     
  • Give students from local JNJG programs tours of company facilities to clarify perceptions of personnel, dress codes, career pathways, working environment, etc.
     
  • On a statewide level, corporate funders are invited to have representation on the JNJG Advisory Board to help guide and grow the program throughout New Jersey.
     

If you are employed by a business with a community support mandate, volunteering with the New Jersey Chamber Foundation is a great way to meet those commitments.

Contact Donna Custard with any questions donna@njchamber.com  or 609-989-7888 x120.

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