On August 11, 2016 the Youth Job Center (YJC) launched its First Jobs campaign, collecting stories about individuals’ first jobs and profiling successful professionals, including various Chicago and Evanston civic leaders.

Launched in conjunction with the trending #firstsevenjobs Twitter hashtag, the web and social media campaign is aimed at showing youth that many successful people had humble beginnings, working seemingly menial jobs unrelated to their desired career paths and their ultimate roles in all sectors of the economy.

A positive first job experience has been shown to lead to more money earned over one’s lifetime and a decrease in the likelihood of unemployment. Through skill-building, education, community and business partnerships, and intentional job creation, the YJC strives to connect youth with positive first work experiences that lead to sustainable futures.

The campaign is available at youthjobcenter.org/first-jobs, and featured profiles will be promoted each day on the YJC’s social media channels. The goal of the campaign is to ultimately encourage community members to share their own first job stories, whether by email, web, or social media, in order to inspire YJC clients to work hard at their first jobs and continue looking ahead towards their futures.