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Omaha students supported by Jobs for America’s Graduates and United Way of the Midlands


OMAHA, Nebraska — Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) Nebraska, in collaboration with United Way of the Midlands, prepares students for life and assists them in succeeding in school immediately. Students as young as sixth grade can enroll in the course.

Buena Vista High School is one of the numerous OPS schools that offer this one-year option.

“You are comparable to one of my top supporters. They help me, like, keep going, “Freshman Zyaire Tucker from Buena Vista High School stated.

Tucker stated that JAG Nebraska is preparing him to speak in public.

“I want to play in the NFL when I’m older, so I’ll have to attend many interviews. Therefore, it teaches me how to overcome my shyness in front of the camera “Tucker replied.

JAG Nebraska helps students achieve success and discover their path.

“Help me further specify what I want to do. That was my main concern, that I could not decide what I desired “Abel Arellano, a sophomore at Buena Vista High School, spoke as such.

Through group activities such as balloon tower construction, students are able to acquire workplace-relevant skills and instruments.

Tucker stated, “The balloon exercise is assisting us in communicating, not only physically but also verbally, and learning how to work as a team as opposed to independently.”

With a 98% graduation record, the program keeps students in school while fostering employability skills.

Becca Bradley, program manager for JAG Nebraska, stated, “What is successful is that they are able to contribute their own insight, based on their voice and choice, into the curriculum, what they are learning, and into life, when many times they are unable to do so.”

In the second semester, students engage with local companies through guest speakers and business trips.

Shauna Paolini, state director for JAG Nebraska, remarked, “The sooner students are able to interact with companies, the more likely they are to think about those employers when applying for jobs.”

Bradley stated that it is interesting to observe the program’s year-long development.

“Seeing the genuine dialogues, the confidence, self-esteem, and maturity of these students is so heartwarming and enjoyable to observe,” Bradley added.

Both students stated they intend to repeat the course the following year.

Tucker stated, “JAG is not just about you; it’s about how we can grow everyone at the same time.”

Currently, only OPS in the metropolitan area has the program. However, JAG Nebraska wishes to expand. If you are enrolled in OPS and interested in the course, you should speak with your school counselor.

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