The Journey to My Better Self Career Academy (J2MBS-CA) prepares at-risk 9th through 12th grade students and young adults, ages 18 to 24, to be job-ready for economically sustainable employment in high-growth industries and occupations. The academy’s career development and skills courses combine academic, career and technical curricula to enrich teaching and learning, and to focus on careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), manufacturing and education. Starting with small learning communities, the Academy creates a supportive, personalized learning environment for students where teachers, career and college counselors, parents and employers collaborate to support the development and success of each student in the program. Secondly, the Academy’s career development and soft skills courses combine academic, career and technical curricula focused on career themes in STEM, manufacturing, finance, health care and social assistance to enrich teaching and learning. Next, it leverages its partnership with the South East Chicago Commission, a consortium of employers which is made up of 1300 local businesses, to provide career awareness and work-based learning opportunities to its participants. It also provides students with individualized career and academic counseling experiences to strengthen career and post-secondary awareness and explore opportunities beyond high school. Finally, it works with Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership and City Colleges of Chicago to prepare program graduates with dual enrollment opportunities and training, while they are still in high school. This program leads to credit toward a post-secondary degree or certificate. The ultimate goal of the Academy is to prepare students for college, provide them with career-related learning experiences that will make them more competitive in the labor market and encourage students to develop higher aspirations for education and employment.
Youth Employment Click Here »