This contribution brings AT&T investments in Genesys Works to a total of $6 million since 2012 as a part of AT&T Aspire, its signature philanthropic initiative. It will also jump-start Genesys Works' program expansion initiatives with a goal of opening new programs in another 15 cities by 2022—serving up to 11,000 new students. The program currently serves students in Houston, Chicago, Twin Cities, the San Francisco Bay Area, and Washington's National Capital Region.
"After going through the Genesys Works program, these highly-trained students see more doors open for them, and they learn about opportunities they never dreamed of before," said Nicole Anderson, assistant vice president, social innovation, and president, AT&T Foundation. "This real-world experience through meaningful internships changes a young person's life trajectory. It equips them with the skills to thrive in the workforce of tomorrow."
Genesys Works offers an intense summer training program with professional and technical skills development, as well as career coaching. After the training, students begin a paid, year-long internship.
Students served by Genesys Works are from low-income households and 96% of them are students of color. 84% are the first in their family to go to college, putting them at higher risk for under-employment. Genesys Works helps these students succeed in a professional environment while still in school. The internships also connect their job experience to their academics, which increases their odds for enrolling in a secondary degree.
Internships give participating students real-world experience in fields like information technology, finance, and business operations, and are with nearly 200 established organizations, including AT&T. This fall, AT&T will welcome interns in Chicago, Houston and Northern Virginia.
Genesys Works boasts a remarkable success rate. To date, 100% of participating students have graduated from high school and have been accepted into college. The organization recently surveyed program graduates with full time jobs who graduated five or more years ago and found their median annual income is $50,000. That's about $10,000 more than the median income for the U.S. population of 25-34-year-olds.**
"Young Americans are experiencing unemployment rates at least twice the national average. It's essential we empower them with skills and work experiences to succeed in a professional career," said Rafael Alvarez, founder and CEO, Genesys Works. "Genesys Works aims to give every young person the opportunity to have a first big break. Thanks to AT&T, we'll be able to offer that opportunity to thousands of students in more communities around the country."
Starting in 2017, Genesys Works will select new cities for program expansion through a request for proposal (RFP) process. Cities meeting the basic criteria to establish and sustain a Genesys Works operation can apply for planning grants to cover the cost of conducting feasibility studies in their communities. Learn more about Genesys Works and its programming at genesysworks.org.
*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.
**National Center for Education Statistics, 2016
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About Philanthropy & Social Innovation at AT&T
AT&T is committed to advancing education, strengthening communities and improving lives. Through its community initiatives, AT&T has a long history of investing in projects that create learning opportunities; promote academic and economic achievement; or address community needs. AT&T Aspire is AT&T's signature philanthropic initiative that drives innovation in education by bringing diverse resources to bear on the issue including funding, technology, employee volunteerism, and mentoring. Through Aspire, we've passed the $250 million mark on our plan to invest $350 million in education from 2008-2017.
About Genesys Works
Genesys Works is a non-profit social enterprise changing the trajectory of life for disadvantaged high school students through meaningful work experiences. Its program consists of eight weeks of technical and professional skills training, a paid year-long corporate internship, college and career coaching, and alumni support to and through college. Its goal is to move more students out of poverty and into professional careers, creating a more productive and diverse workforce in the process. Since its founding in 2002, Genesys Works has grown to serve nearly 3,000 students annually in Houston, Chicago, Minneapolis/St. Paul, the San Francisco Bay Area, and Washington's National Capital Region. To learn more, visit www.genesysworks.org.
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SOURCE AT&T Inc.