What do you want to be when you grow up?

June means graduation ceremonies. Cute littles dressed up in caps made of construction paper and too much glitter. Middle-schoolers promoted to the high-school big leagues of awkwardness. High-schoolers flinging their caps into the air, excited and nervous about what comes next. Young adults graduating from college, eager to launch into their careers.

One thing all these graduates have in common are the dreams for the future. Young people have all sorts of dreams. Sometime you get off track, or have to hit pause on your dreams. That’s exactly what has happened for the youth in our Reconnecting Youth program. But by seeking out this program they’re committing to making strides to get back on track and dedicated to graduating. The dreams these youth have are as varied as their experiences that led them to this program.

Reconnecting Youth partners offer support built around three elements: one-on-one mentoring, educational coaching and career navigation. We have seen a lot of success with this program which is why we’ve been able to leverage $14 million in state dollars since 2015 to implement this support throughout King County. This leverage is key to meeting our goal of engaging half of the 14,000 eligible teens and adults in this program by 2020.

Meet some of these hardworking students and their dreams of what they want to be next:

  • Eddie wants to study film, writing and art after he completes his high school diploma and associate’s degree, which he’ll working on concurrently at Green River Community College.
  • Hibaq is the first person in her family to have graduated high school and wants to work in international law after she earns her associate’s degree, which she’ll do with help from a jumpstart scholarship.
  • Nafisa wants to become an ultrasound technician! She is fascinated by the technology and moved by the idea of showing people their babies for the first time.
  • Samantha is still deciding what she wants to be. After she completes her diploma (she’s just one credit away!) she’s looking into law, midwifery and immigration. We can’t wait to see what she chooses.
  • Marité wants to go into fashion merchandising and work for Nordstrom as a buyer, which she is one step closer to doing after earning her degree. Watch Marité’s story from Q13:
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