New York City Mayor Eric Adams announced an unprecedented expansion of the Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP), with $236 million in base funding that will enable a record 90,000 SYEP jobs.
On March 1, Adams opened applications for SYEP, a program run by the city’s Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) dedicated to helping young people ages 14 to 24 secure summer jobs and work experience.
In addition to the 90,000 positions available through SYEP, 10,000 summer jobs are available through other city agencies following an additional $79 million investment announced by Mayor Adams in the draft budget for the 2023 financial year.
“Providing programs like SYEP to young New Yorkers protects them and helps secure them a brighter future,” Mayor Adams said. “We are thrilled to open applications to tens of thousands of young people to engage in summer jobs, develop skills and make memories that will last a lifetime.”
This investment in the city’s youth means that thousands more young people will be able to reap the benefits of the financial and educational opportunities made available to them through summer employment programs.
“This is one of the biggest – if not the biggest – one-year expansion for SYEP and it will ultimately mean that 20,000 more young people [than last year] get a job this summer,” JT Falcone Senior Policy Analyst at United Neighborhood Houses, an affiliate of SYEP, told amNew York on March 4. “SYEP has so many permeating benefits. There are economic benefits, not only for young people, but also for their families. Many of our youth report that they contribute to their household finances using their payment. Young people enjoy major academic advantages; studies have shown increases in GPA the year after completion and have shown they are less likely to be absent.
The expansion to 90,000 young people enrolled is a significant expansion from the following year which saw 75,000 young people participate. With this advance, advocates hope it will signal further future expansion to allow even more young people to participate.
“This summer represents the largest investment New York City has ever made in youth employment experiences for our young people,” said Sheena Wright, Deputy Mayor for Strategic Initiatives. “SYEP remains the cornerstone of this massive effort, and this year’s program will provide young New Yorkers with a variety of opportunities to explore careers, develop workplace skills, and earn well-deserved pay.”
Not only does SYEP provide immediate paid employment opportunities to youth in NYC, but other services are also offered so that when youth leave the program, they have the resources to pursue career opportunities.
“The Summer Jobs for Youth Program does more than connect young people to paid experiences – it provides them with invaluable professional, civic and leadership skills that you don’t always find on a resume,” said Valerie Mulligan. , DYCD Deputy Commissioner for Workforce Connect. “DYCD and our network of suppliers, employers and SYEP partner agencies are thrilled to offer young people a record number of opportunities this summer.”
This expansion has delighted many people involved in SYEP and other summer programs for young people. With this growth, it shows advocates and voters that their voices are heard in city government and that they can dream even bigger.
“I know a lot of people who have worked in advocacy for two decades who haven’t had the chance to get their hands on an expansion that has so much potential to make such an impact,” Falcone said. “What I’ve said as loud as I can to anyone who will listen is ‘this is an example of what happens when government works with communities, follows the lead of their constituents and listens stakeholders and works collaboratively to put things into action. This is an example of what happens when things work out well.
To apply, visit the NYC Youth Summer Job Program website.