Students Earning Stipends and Learning New Skills

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There has been a rise in online programs for Chicago teens; with different stipends installments to encourage consistent participation. The pandemic has caused significant job losses, and with more parents out of work, the money teens earn may be of extra help this year. Leaders of the programs show “compassion over compliance”- giving students opportunities to learn and earn easy money.

After School Matters and other organizations have helped participants with huge life decisions about future careers. Participants like Victor Davis, an upcoming senior at the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences, states “these organizations gave me a chance to learn that what you should do in a career is something that you like to do and get paid for it.” Another student Jasmin Aquino will be sewing for the summer as she plans to go to fashion school.

Commitment to helping students have materials for these programs is important. The week before summer programs officially started, Chef Gloria Hafer spent hours delivering ingredients to her students.

More than 10,000 Chicago teens could earn stipends this summer for participating in programs like After School Matters. Over 10,000 applicants for a spot in one of the more than 500 programs. Depending on the program’s complexity, time commitment, and levels- such as apprenticeship and internship- stipends can range from $336 to $850.


Written by: Trinity Simmons-Brooks

Edited by: Jakiria M Williams


Chicago Tribune:  Ingredients dropped off, sewing patterns delivered: Chicago students earning stipends through online summer program

Image courtesy of Bruce Turner Flickr Page- Creative Commons


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