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Career Readiness Academy

For the first workshop session, students learned how to apply for a job, write a resume, and complete a job interview. The students enjoyed participating in the interviews and building their resumes. Each student has a mentor to help guide them through the course. Volunteer mentors are Kookaburra team members. Bill Crane of Heartland also volunteered as a mentor. We greatly appreciate all of the volunteer mentors for helping our students with learn job skills.

Week 2 focused on Basic Banking and Financial Planning. Alicia Somers from Regions Bank gave a virtual workshop on Basic Banking for Students. Fostering Connections St. Johns Treasurer and Board Member Micah Clukey gave a presentation for students about reading pay stubs and taxes. The presentations were very informative for the students. We look forward to continuing to grow our financial wellness programs for our students. Thank you Micah and Alicia for volunteering your time and sharing your expertise with our students.

During the final session, students learned the foundations of being a good employee; work attire and hygiene, basic customer skills and working working with team members. Each student received a basic hygiene kit. Through interactive games and activities, students learned the importance of time management in the workplace and budgeting. For the budgeting activity, students were given twenty coffee beans to set a budget. Through different life situations given, students had to make adjustments to their budgets.

Edward Jones Financial Advisor Serena Ostrowsky gave a presentation on goal setting and selecting careers for students. Each student took a short interest quiz to determine their skill set strengths and possible careers for the students. This was so helpful for the students who are working to secure an internship.

All student received a graduation certificate and were treated to lunch from Chick-Fli-A. Following the Career Readiness Academy, students went to Target and selected work and job interview clothing through a grant provided by The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida. The students are working to be placed into their paid internships and will be taking monthly soft skills classes to continue to develop their skills.

Thank you Sweet Smiles Photography for providing photography for our Career Readiness Academy in partnership with The Kookaburra! Your photography has helped us share our story with the community and raise awareness of teens in the foster care system. Owner & Photographer Amanda Lamosova is an outstanding photographer and dedicated to helping foster youth in our community succeed. Thank you Amanda for your support!

Thank you to The Kookaburra owners Megan, Spencer, and their team members for partnering with us to begin the Career Readiness Academy! The entire Kookaburra team has dedicated many hours to planning, preparing course materials for students, and mentoring our students. Our students are growing in their career readiness skills and are looking forward to their first jobs! The training received at the Career Readiness Academy is helping students succeed in all areas of their life. We are so fortunate to have The Kookaburra as part of the St. Augustine community as a local business invested helping the youth of our future. Thank you The Kookaburra for all you to to support Fostering Connections St. Johns!

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