Beyond the iconic blue door of the Boys & Girls Club of St. Lucie where great futures begin, opportunity regularly comes a-knocking.
Thanks to a grant from Career Source Research Coast, over 100 club members aged 14-18 are engaged in a Summer Youth Activities Program promoting job preparation and employment. In addition to completing a Youth Employment Success Solutions Curriculum (YESS), the teens receive exposure to a variety of career options, including entrepreneurship. Hands-on experience gained through an internship and job shadowing is yet another essential component of the program.
Recently, ten teenage members of the Ken Pruitt Club took a career-exploratory field trip to St. Lucie Fire District’s Station 12 in Port St. Lucie. There, the young men and women listened intently as Captain Jimmy Meyer, and fellow firefighters discussed the different paths open to them within the profession, the importance of education and what it takes to move up through the ranks.
While touring the station, the teens gained valuable insight into the lives of firefighter-paramedics, EMTs, and ranking members of the department from what it’s like to work shifts to becoming part of or leading a cohesive team and the importance of possessing excellent people skills.
Fire personnel delighted in the experience. “The Fire District is committed to the children of St. Lucie County,” said Meyer. “Events like these provide opportunities for teens to experience first-hand career opportunities!”
Following a hearty lunch of tacos with rice and beans prepared by the firefighters, a robust question and answer session ensued. Inquisitive, the teens asked about starting salaries, how the job affects personal lives, the most difficult types of callouts and a host of other topics.
As the teens progress through this inspiring summer program and begin building their great futures, some may undoubtedly find that their ladder of success starts on top of a gleaming red fire engine!