ABOUT OUR ORGANIZATION:  

Youth Solutions, Inc. (YS) is a statewide nonprofit that offers opportunity pathways to education and employment success for Michigan’s vulnerable youth. We envision a Michigan where every young person is educated, employed, and career-bound.  

Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates (JMG) is Youth Solutions premier programming and has been the opportunity pathway vehicle used for 13 years to drive education and employment success for vulnerable youth since its launch in 2008. 

JMG is a unique statewide player offering a network strategy to increasing high school graduation rates, post-secondary education completion, and employment rates for young graduates. As the Michigan affiliate of the national Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) program, JMG is on track to offer services to thousands of Michigan youth through programming across every region. We’re working with partners and stakeholders across the state to expand our work in the coming years with a newly completed strategic plan.  

Youth Solutions, Inc. is a part of the Kinexus Group family of organizations. Kinexus Group, recently recognized as one of Nonprofit Times 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 Best Nonprofits to Work For, is a cutting-edge community development organization with growing initiatives to create an economically thriving Michigan. We are change agents who create solutions for business, workforce, and community challenges to promote economic vitality. While this position is part of and reports to Youth Solutions, Inc., this position is employed by Kinexus Group through an employee leasing agreement with Youth Solutions, Inc. 

OUR DESIRED OUTCOMES:  

The JMG Specialist is critical to the continued success of the JMG program. Integrated within a local high school, this full-time high-performing role provides services consisting of classroom instruction, mentoring, barrier removal, employability skills training, and postsecondary transition services. The role is responsible for identifying, recruiting, and instructing students at-risk of not graduating on time, not transitioning successfully post-graduation, and/or who have an interest in high demand career fields. The JMG Specialist also works closely with community partners to ensure the continued success of program students. Position is located within a Dowagiac Union High School. The JMG specialist will demonstrate commitment to JMG core values: Collaboration, Excellence, Leadership and Solution-Focused.  

WHAT WE EXPECT FROM YOU: 

Classroom Instruction and Academic Remediation. JMG Specialists work to ensure young people graduate from high school and master the competencies that will lead to winning in employment, education and in life.  

  • Recruit, screen, and enroll a full roster of approximately 65 youth, and teach 4-5 classes per day. 
  • Lead students towards mastery of the JAG National competencies utilizing project-based learning, hands-on activities, film presentations, guest speakers, workshops, and other instructional methods.  
  • Educate youth of the high demand career pathways and provide opportunities to explore career options and develop interest. 
  • Promote student development through project-based learning and build an appreciation for teamwork and a sense of belonging among the youth. 
  • Work with students and other staff/faculty to provide remediation and/or tutoring required for students to improve their basic education skills and ensure students graduate with their class. 
  • May perform additional duties as appropriate which may include things such as: hall duty, lunch duty, advisory, etc. 

Mentoring and Community Outreach. Through methods such as trauma informed care, JMG Specialists work with youth to develop the skills necessary to overcome barriers and win!   

  • Ensures positive perceptions of the JMG program within schools by developing and maintaining positive, effective working relationships with school personnel including teachers, administrators, students, and members of the Advisory Committee. 
  • Advocates for the program and develops a pool of effective community support resources by working with employers, parents, civic groups, and legislators to build awareness of and support for the program. 
  • Provide daily opportunities for resiliency that address student challenges and/or triggers.  Offer guidance in the areas of personal growth, academic achievement and career goals.   
  • Organize the establishment of a highly motivational, career-oriented, student-led Career Association (made up of all JMG participants within the school with student elected leadership). Serve as the advisor to the JMG Career Association within the school.  
  • Work with the local Michigan Works! agency to provide connections to additional support services and other community organizations.  
  • Provide mentoring and wrap-around services. Refer to school or community based organizations as needed to overcome barriers to success.   
  • Contact parents/guardians about attendance, grades, positive observations, and behavior challenges as they arise.  
  • Assist students in developing service learning projects (community service) in order to meet JMG requirement of 15 hours per student per year. 
  • Attend JMG meetings/professional development including mandatory staff meetings. Assist with special events or peer-based training as needed.  

School-to-Career Transition and Employer Engagement. Not only do JMG Specialists work with youth to gain skills needed for employment during school, they also provide follow-up support for at least 12 months after graduation. 

  • Work with the Michigan Works! business services team and business partners to develop outside opportunities such as work-based learning and/or job shadowing. 
  • Outreach to businesses for purposes of engagement in projects and work-based learning opportunities, including business tours, job shadows, service learning projects, internships, apprenticeships, etc. 
  • Outreach to postsecondary institutions to provide guidance and resources, and set up college tours and guest speakers based on in-demand career pathways. 
  • Assists students in finding and maintaining quality employment and/or post-secondary educational programs.  
  • Maintains contact with non-seniors during the summer months to ensure youth stay in school and graduate on time. 
  • Works closely with JMG graduates, employers, and postsecondary providers for 12 months after the end of the school year to ensure satisfactory outcomes in employment and/or postsecondary education/training; develops a plan for contacts with non-graduates to ensure effective transition to employment or additional education. 

Data Management and Accountability. Data entry is essential to capturing the outcomes and achievements of our youth.  

  • Daily updates in National database to include attendance, grades, daily instruction summaries, record of daily contact hours. 
  • Keep up with school’s student reporting to monitor attendance, grades, behavior referral, on track to graduate, GPA, engagement, and any other required documentation requested by the district. 
  • Provide personal and confidential information for screening in accordance with local and state laws and organizational policies governing those working directly with students in schools. Maintain compliance with The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) at all times. 
  • Complete and regularly maintain all paper and electronic documentation as required by Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates, the JAG National organization, and Partner School District.  Submit properly completed written and electronic documentation as directed by Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates.  
  • Work with Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates to complete all monitoring agreements and documentation required. 

MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS: 

  • Bachelor's Degree  
  • Valid Michigan teaching certificate with Secondary English endorsement  
  • Skills in human relations, leadership, supervision, and motivational techniques. 
  • Ability to work independently while managing multiple priorities. 
  • Ability to establish the appropriate boundaries while developing and nurturing supportive relationships with youth. 
  • Exceptional communication skills and cultural competencies. 
  • Ability to develop lesson plans and educational opportunities consistent with the JAG model. 
  • Working knowledge of basic computer applications such as word processing. 
  • Live our values (be Bold, Inspirational, Entrepreneurial and Inclusive) 

PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS: 

  • Must be able to lift up to 25 pounds at times. 
  • Must be able to traverse school facility and lead students to safety in the event of an emergency. 

PREFERRED REQUIREMENTS:  

  • Experience working with youth accompanied by knowledge of positive youth development strategies. 

WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT FROM US: 

  • A robust onboarding experience to integrate you into our team.   
  • Team of Teams training in support of the organizational strategies.   
  • Job training and development to ensure you are established and growing in your role.   
  • Cross Operational Meetings with your peers.   
  • Exceptional benefits. 
  • Be a part of transformational change in Michigan 

We have unique culture that requires individuals to be BOLD, INSPIRATIONAL, ENTREPRENEURIAL, and INCLUSIVE. We spend more waking hours with each other than we do with family or friends, so finding someone that adds to our culture is extremely important. 

Kinexus Group is an Equal Opportunity Employer/Program. Auxiliary aids, reasonable accommodations and/or services are available upon request for individuals with disabilities. Michigan Relay Center: 711 Voice and TDD. Kinexus is a partner of American Job Centers. 

 

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