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Summer Opportunities Heating Up for Futures and Options Interns

Futures and Options summer interns attend a work-readiness orientation.

The summer internship season is upon us, and Futures and Options (F+O) interns are gearing up to enter the workforce. F+O will have a record-breaking 220 interns at sites across all five boroughs of New York City. Students will be working at paid, mentored internships at a wide array of companies, whose focuses range from finance and accounting to education and the arts.

F+O internships help students understand what professional opportunities are available to them, while helping them develop soft skills that are invaluable in the workplace. Interns also attend weekly career development workshops in relevant topics such as workplace etiquette, communication, conflict resolution, and public speaking. “I am very grateful that the Futures and Options program has recognized the qualities I have to offer in any potential internship,” says summer intern Fatima Keita. “I look forward to potentially being an intern and gaining meaningful work experience while also remaining diligent in my studies.”

In order to prepare students to enter the workplace, F+O interns participated in a rigorous orientation program throughout the month of June. Students also learned to develop their resume writing and interview skills in preparation for interviews with internship sites. The hiring process has been ongoing throughout the month of June, and once placed with an employer, interns will begin work on July 7. The program will last six weeks, with students working between 25-35 hours a week.

“Our program gives students the opportunity to learn about the professional world at a really formative time in their lives,” says program coordinator Corey Ogilby. “The experience will help them focus their interests as they enter college, and will have positive benefits for years to come.”

F+O and Achievement First
Team Up for Work-Readiness

Futures and Options offers workshops on a range of workforce development skills to organizations and educational institutions throughout the five boroughs.

As part of our On the Road program, Futures and Options offers work-readiness workshops at various schools and organizations throughout the city. For students who cannot commit to one of our 12-week programs, or only need to learn certain aspects of career preparedness, On the Road workshops can provide an enormous value for a small time commitment.

In June, F+O program coordinators provided workshops to students at Achievement First Brooklyn High School. Students learned the foundations of workplace etiquette and conflict resolution. They were presented with a range of workplace scenarios, and discussed how to best address the problems that came up. They also learned professional telephone etiquette, and how to craft an email that sends the right impression.

In written evaluations of the workshops, students cited the lessons as helpful and instructive. “I learned to always be professional in the workplace because it reflects back to who you are as a person,” wrote one student.

Organizations and schools are invited to reach out to F+O to help develop students’ work-readiness skills. F+O’s program staff distills aspects of existing F+O workshop curriculum to fit students’ needs, and caters to all different ages and experience levels.

If you are interested in hosting an F+O workshop, please contact Strategic Partnership Manager Joanna Munoz at jmunoz@futuresandoptions.org  or (212) 601-0002.

College Success Program Winds Down a Kickoff Year

Reinaldo Cuni, center left, celebrates the completion of the College Success Program with mentor Teona Lazashvili, right and F+O program coordinators Corey Ogilby and Janay Daniel.

As the school year winds down, Futures and Options is wrapping up the inaugural year of the College Success Program. Thanks to a grant from the Sprint Foundation, F+O was able to maintain a strong support system for our students as they navigate their first year of college.

Through the College Success Program, graduates of our program were set up with upper classmen or young professionals to help them make the most of their first year of college. Fourteen freshmen participated in the program during its first year, and each was paired up with a mentor. Excitingly, 10 of the 14 mentors who participated in the program are F+O alumni themselves!

Over the course of the year, students attended events, and many met with their mentors outside the program, developing strong professional and personal relationships. At the kickoff event in January, program participants learned valuable networking skills from their mentors. Both mentors and mentees also attended a workshop in March, where they learned the importance of representing themselves positively on social media.

On June 12, the mentees were presented with certificates commemorating their completion of the program. Mentees gathered for one last event on June 18, a field trip to Capital One, where they toured the corporate office and learned what it means to work in the financial world.

Both mentors and mentees gave terrific feedback of the program. Freshman Vlada Pimenova plans to keep in regular touch with her mentor, Matthew Lee, an audit associate at KPMG. “My mentor exceeded my expectations – he always stayed in touch and was very helpful. He helped me create long-term goals and emphasized the importance of being active in extracurricular activities.”

Other pairs expressed the same desire to keep in touch beyond the program’s end. Lilian Yang is grateful for her relationship with her mentor, Jenny Paperno, a junior finance and accounting major at NYU. “We built a bonding that will last forever. It’s nice to have someone out there who cares.”

Futures and Options Welcomes
Development Assistant Lauren Vincent

Lauren joined the Futures and Options team in June 2014. Previously, she served as press intern for the New York City Campaign Finance Board during the busy 2013 city election season. Lauren graduated from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 2012 with a degree in Communication, and was inspired to pursue nonprofit work by her coursework in that field. Motivated by her interest in social and political issues, she also volunteered as a media intern for the Massachusetts chapter of the National Organization for Women. Additionally, Lauren has extensive newspaper experience, having worked as a copyeditor and reporter for Gatehouse Media New England's community papers, and an assistant editor for UMass' newspaper, the Massachusetts Daily Collegian. She originally hails from the Boston area, but is happy to call New York her second home. 

It's Easy- Shop at AmazonSmile and Donate
to Futures and Options

You can now support Futures and Options when you buy items from Amazon! Simply visit https://smile.amazon.com/, log into your Amazon account and type “Futures and Options” into the search bar. After selecting Futures and Options, Amazon will now donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to Futures and Options.

Futures and Options wishes everyone a
safe and fun 4th of July weekend!*

*F+O's office will close on Thursday, July 3 at 2 pm and reopen on Monday, July 7 at 10 am.

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