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Youth Engagement and Workforce Development

Published: Feb. 20, 2023

Written By: Nathan Hogg, Richmond High School Senior

I attended the IHOPE forum in Wayne County in April of 2022. Little did I know it would impact my life forever as one of the few youth attendees. While attending this forum, I realized adults in the community wanted youth to become more engaged with our workforce. I decided that day to start my own business. On May 6th, 2022, I started a small business and created a website called Hogg Helps. My mission is to empower youth for future careers and stability in the workforce. When searching my website, youth ages 14-19 in Wayne County can explore jobs in our area that they can apply for and be potentially hired. Hogg Helps is also partnered with Future Achievers to provide quality knowledge about jobs, future careers, and soft skills you must develop for work. Hogg Helps has also partnered with United Way of Whitewater Valley, Boys and Girls Club of Wayne County, and Future Achievers on a workforce development initiative that consists of two cohorts a year. An estimate of 20 students will attend classes to learn the importance of building a résumé and cover letter, practicing mock interviews, and filling out an application. After attending the classes, students will then be able to job shadow at businesses from diverse sectors.  Hogg Helps has been supported by nearly 15 different organizations in Wayne County during the nine months of operation. Because of my good work and my advocacy for youth in Wayne County, I was offered an intern position with Sharon Harlin-Davis, Community Engagement Manager at Reid Health. Being provided with this internship, I can work and engage with the community at large.  Assisting Mrs. Davis with community outreach events such as Medical Monday, and our Shoes for Kids program, where we partner with community organizations to donate hundreds of pairs of shoes to kids in the communities we serve. It is a pleasure serving and volunteering on several non-profit boards, and committees that impact the lives of many. This internship has made me dedicate my career to be in the community serving and helping folks who need it the most. I can testify that if I didn’t attend the IHOPE event hosted by Purdue University, or gain support from community leaders that attended, none of these opportunities would have come to fruition for me. 

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