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Opening career pathways for talented urban youth

How It Works For Mentors

Mentoring is a relationship of mutual benefit for both your Youth Designer and your firm.


ABOVE: Northeastern University's amazing Mentors Stacey Bakaj and Bruce Ployer with Youth Designer Eliany Castro


Planning Work

A Youth Designer's job will be a balance of work that is useful to you and your firm, and engaging and educational for the student (work is considered engaging when a student can clearly make a connection between their tasks and your firm’s products and services). We encourage you to try to outline such connections, especially when students are doing what they may perceive as “busy work”. If you are having trouble finding specific tasks for your student, here are some suggested educational activities that you can use:

Job Shadowing: Allow the student to spend time observing and interviewing different staff members about their job responsibilities

Research Projects: Develop projects where students can research different aspects of design

Youth Designers Take Action Competition: An ongoing educational assignment that is to be completed by the students during their hours at the firm. This is a personal project that enables students to have as a physical product of their summer’s work. You should allow your student to work independently on their Take Action assignment, but also make time to guide, assist and give advice

Discovery Book: A seven-week project that provides an opportunity for Youth Designers to document the experiences of their summer immersion as it unfolds, combining their own words with images they create and/or select in a book format. While adhering to the Youth Design brand “styleguide,” students were challenged to individually develop a unique creative voice while maintaining professional attention to the needs of potential readers

Résumé Design: Students can work on a résumé that demonstrates design competence and may serve as a tool for future career development. Supervisors should assist students in this project.

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