Roadtrip Nation: A Summer Success
Teenagers and young adults often have a difficult time finding or choosing the right career path; however, it is a task that we may all have to do at least once in our lifetime. Additionally, it is an important decision as it concerns what we may be doing for the rest of our lives. The Riverside County WDB, as part of its Summer Youth Program, wanted to provide a way for area young people to explore careers in an interactive way that would stimulate thinking about their own futures.
Through a partnership with the Workforce Development Board, and as part of the Youth Opportunity Centers’ Summer Work Experience Program (SWEP), a “Roadtrip Nation” program was chosen to get young people thinking about careers they might want to pursue by using a mock media interview format to ask questions of others and, in the process, of themselves.
Six teams of young people were trained on how to use video equipment, set up interviews, and do labor market research. Traveling in green RVs throughout the local community, participants interviewed employees from a variety of industries who described the skills needed to do their current job and the education or training that would be helpful to anyone seeking to follow that career path.
In 2010, 389 youth between the ages of 14 and 21 participated in the program and over 200 interviews have been uploaded to the county’s website to share with other youth interested in viewing them. Members of “Team Fire” said the City of Hemet’s Fire Chief gave them some great advice. In essence, he said, the key to becoming a firefighter is to go to school, get in shape, stay out of trouble, and get involved in your community. Interviews can be viewed by visiting www.roadtripnation.org/countyhub/riverside.php.