Preparing Michigan youth for future employment
Michigan youth will be work-ready and financially smart.
Campaign Priority: 4-H Workforce Readiness and Financial Literacy
Campaign Goal: $500,000
By the time they enter the workforce, today’s youth will be addressing problems not yet identified with tools that don’t currently exist. Research indicates that 65 percent of today’s grade school students will work jobs not yet invented. With so much uncertainty, young people need more than an education to prepare for future careers: they need well-rounded skills applicable to any job as well as the ability to explore potential opportunities.
To meet this need, Michigan 4-H offers programs that focus on entrepreneurship, financial literacy, career exploration and workforce preparation. Through these activities, MSU Extension equips young Michiganders with skills and competencies critical to any job while allowing youth to explore career options and entrepreneurship.
In 2016, this programming reached 11,100 participants in 80 Michigan counties.
After their involvement in these vocational activities, youth showed significant increases in a variety of skills, including a:
- 57 percent increase in those who understood the parts of a business plan.
- 50 percent increase in those who were aware of what employers look for on a job application or resume.
- 31 percent increase in those who knew the requirements for success in a career in which they were interested.
As a Berrien County 4-H’er, Kaitlynn Miller excelled in leadership and received several 4-H scholarships. Today, she is a successful entrepreneur and businesswoman. She owns Art & Image of Harbor Country, a custom signs and graphics business. She creates signs, banners, decals, trade show displays, and much more. Miller graduated from Ferris State University in December 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in print management and a minor in business integrated marketing techniques with an emphasis in graphic design. She also holds an associate degree in applied science in graphic design.
Miller said that 4-H helped her build leadership and organizational skills in addition to confidence and relationships that are still beneficial today. She learned money management practices by watching her fellow 4-H members and her parents as club coordinators. All of these life skills positively contributed to the future entrepreneur.