Brianna Logan was one of 50 YouthBuild graduates from across the country who traveled to Washington, D.C. last week for a two-day alumni gathering focused on leadership, financial literacy and personal branding, culminating with visits to legislators on Capitol Hill.
Logan was nominated by the YouthBuild program director of Job Point’s YouthBuild program. Graduates current connection to the YouthBuild movement and interest in professional development opportunities, advocacy and public speaking granted them the ability to attend.
Logan said, “Overall it was great experience, I am very thankful to have learned what I did and meet new people and to be able to take home what I learned to the rest of my community.”
The event was launched by a keynote from John Valverde, CEO of YouthBuild USA.
“We are so proud of our graduates and the leaders they have become,” said Valverde. “Our Alumni Leadership Gathering reinforced the idea that YouthBuild is a community that can lift and inspire one another to achieve the seemingly impossible, and we hope our graduates continue to flourish in the next phase of their lives, both personally and professionally.”
A thorough program of workshops and plenaries followed, fostering leadership, growth and success from this exceptional group of young people. A leadership workshop helped the graduates identify their leadership strengths, tap into their leadership potential and articulate how they can apply leadership practices and behaviors in their own personal journey. This model turned the abstract concept of leadership into easy-to-grasp actions they can use in their everyday lives. A financial capability workshop provided graduates with the basic laws of prosperity, helping them uncover the causes of poverty and applying methods of success in their finances. The workshop also helped attendees move beyond basic financial literacy to begin exploring attitudes and behaviors that promote financial health and stability.
A personal branding plenary helped the graduates see their personal experiences for the successes they are and gave them the tools to illustrate their life’s journey. The session provided tips and techniques to help define their personal brand in today’s digital-driven world. Such techniques can be used in interviews and advocacy opportunities for the causes that matter most to them.
With their skills crafted and honed, the graduates visited the offices of their elected officials, where they took meetings with House and Senate members and their staffs. The graduates educated them on their journey with YouthBuild and their plans for the future.
This event was hosted by YouthBuild USA. The leadership and financial capability development workshops were funded in part by American Express and Experian.
About YouthBuild USA
YouthBuild USA is the non-profit support center for 360 local YouthBuild programs operating in 23 countries, with 260 programs in 44 U.S. states and 100 programs in 22 other countries. In YouthBuild programs, unemployed, low-income, and out-of-school young people ages 16 to 24 work toward their high school diploma or equivalency, while learning job skills by building affordable housing and other community assets in their neighborhoods and engaging in community service and leadership training. Proven effective by the most rigorous program evaluation research, YouthBuild’s comprehensive model gives graduates the confidence and tools they need to become strong, responsible, and ethical young leaders. For more information, visit www.youthbuild.org.
About Job Point’s YouthBuild program
Job Point’s YouthBuild grant will assist 67 at-risk young adults to advance educational levels, develop leadership abilities, and obtain skills training in the construction field, while building new homes in our community’s most impoverished neighborhoods and improving infrastructure by maintaining and repairing roadways. The program will address the core issues facing our communities of poverty, graduation rates, unemployment, crime rates and safe, affordable housing. The primary target population is high school dropouts, adjudicated youth, young people aging out of foster care, youth with disabilities, homeless youth and other disconnected youth populations between the ages of 16 to 24. The project places a priority on serving females with or without children, as well as veterans and their spouses. As a result, two single-family homes will be built utilizing green technologies, then sold to income-eligible individuals or families with down payment assistance available through partnership with the City of Columbia.
Job Point is Missouri’s premier employment center and Community Development Corporation. Since 1965, we have been linking people and jobs by providing career planning and job placement assistance. We specialize in preparing individuals to enter the workforce, while meeting a critical need of the business community. The organization is headquartered in Columbia, Missouri, with locations in Marshall, Moberly and Sedalia. For information about programs, services and locations please call 573/474-8560. Employers interested in hiring graduates may post job openings at: www.jobpointmo.org/postjob.htm.