Published: Thursday, May 22, 2014 at 10:21 AM.

Eleven young adults dedicated numerous hours the past three months to gain skills vital to their successful transition into the workforce. Last week they graduated from The Ladder Program in a ceremony at Gulf Coast State College Gulf/Franklin Center.

Program graduates are: Alyssa Lee Catha, Raheem Clemons, Sabrina Lynn Edge, Jessica Lynn Griffin, Joesph Julian, Alexander King, Joseph A. Love, Sidney Love, LaDonna Ann Faye Pelt, Marquez D. Quinn and Lora Elizabeth Stabler.

            Targeted specifically at underprivileged and unemployed 18 to 21 year-olds, the program is aimed at helping participants learn that there are many opportunities out there for them to succeed in life, but they need to be prepared and recognize them when they present themselves, according to Kim Bodine, Executive Director of CareerSource Gulf Coast.

            “We know that many young people sort of drift around after high school, not really finding their niche, both work wise and socially,” Bodine said. “The ladder program was designed because research showed us that up to 70 percent of the young adults who did not enter post-secondary training or the military took three years before they attached to the workforce.”

The Ladder is a progression from personal awareness and growth, into appropriate workplace behavior and, of course, finding a good job. 

“Instilling a strong work ethic from the perspective of the employer, and discussing the lifelong value of ongoing education is a big part of The Ladder Program,” Bodine said. “It is a big job, as you can imagine, working with 20-somethings, but we strive to fuel the drive in these young adults to lead successful lives through self-sufficiency and hard work. It’s about providing them with an opportunity that might not otherwise exist for them – and that’s an idea the Board of CareerSource Gulf Coast very much supports.”

            Over a period of 12 weeks, seminars are offered in varied topics including career exploration, life coaching, financial literacy, resume building, interviewing techniques, driver’s education training for those who need it, Dale Carnegie training and so much more.

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