Get Connected

The Get Connected program gives you and your employees a unique opportunity to help mold the workforce of tomorrow. Through Get Connected, local high school juniors and seniors enrolled in Career Tech programs visit your workplace, learn about careers that align with their skills and interests, and build relationships with team members in your company or organization.

An optional ongoing mentoring component includes continued communication and career exploration experiences between students and  employee mentors throughout the school year.


HOSTING A GET CONNECTED EVENT
The format is customizable and typically consists of a 2-2½ hour visit to your workplace:

-10-15 minute introduction to your business, focused on workforce needs and character traits of new hires
-Inspirational story from business leader or employee
-45-minute “hands-on” experience/tour, often conducted in subgroups
-30-minute networking discussion (1-2 students matched with employee)
-Closing presentation

Optional activities:
-Lunch
-Company giveaway

A 1-hour training session is conducted prior to the event for all participating employee mentors.


ONGOING MENTORING COMPONENT

Get Connected mentoring is designed to fit within an employee’s work schedule and aligns with employers’ workforce development goals.

-Continued communication with students via email
-Follow-up group visit to students’ classroom
-Assist with arranging future job shadowing opportunities
-Mentors advise/provide feedback on student class projects

Background checks are required for ongoing mentoring, and are provided free of charge.


STUDENT PREPARATION

-Student practice networking skills and are equipped for a meaningful experience
-Transportation is provided
-Parent/guardian permission slips are completed


WORKPLACE BENEFITS
-Get Connected liaison/UW staff provides ongoing support o customize activities based on each company’s unique work-force needs
-Get Connected templates are provided for effective volunteer recruitment and mentor matching
-Online reporting tools used for event assessment and impact
-Identification of other potential opportunities to work with schools to meet company workforce needs


JOB SHADOWING AND CO-OPS
Get Connected is a powerful tool to identify young talent and grow a workforce pipeline for local employers. Many students have the option for on-the-job learning their senior year instead of being in their Career Tech class. Working with the school and teachers, we can  help identify motivated students and place them in long-term job shadowing and paid or unpaid internship experiences with your business or organization.


ONE EXPERIENCE GIVES A STUDENT HOPE
Get Connected provides area students with the hope and confidence they need to go after their dreams.

“I’m going to be the first person in my family to go to college and I’m proud to say that. I just have been having trouble on the process and this program has already benefited me and has boosted my motivation as well. I feel like I have a better chance at college and I just want to be the best I can be because a lot people look to me and expect a lot out of me and I do also. Again, thank you.” 2016 GlenOak graduate and current college student

The United Way Get Connected program is funded in part by a Community Connectors grant from the Ohio Department of Education. The goal of the Community Connectors program is to develop more youth mentoring relationships in Ohio that focus on 5 core principles:
-Setting goals to be prepared for 21st Century
-Building character
-Developing pathways to achievement
-Building a sense of resiliency
-Believing in a positive future

Get Connected partners have included: • Aultman/Aultman College • Canton Drop Forge • Canton Police Department • Diebold-Nixdorf • Factory of Terror • Innis Maggiore Advertising • Ohio Gratings, Inc. • Seifert Companies • Standard Printing Company of Canton • Stark State University • The Karcher Group • TimkenSteel • Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway • Williams Companies, Inc.

“I wanted to say thank you for taking time out of your day to talk to me and Jackie about Williams Company and the welding part, but mostly thank you for just talking to us about integrity. Sometimes I fall short on it cause things get too hard, but I need integrity to be a good welder, a good football player and a better person. I think the Williams Company is an awesome company and I would love to eventually work for you guys maybe sometime in the future.” McKinley High School student

“I just want to inform you on how much fun I had talking to you and learning things from you. I thank you for the advice you gave me. I would love to hear from you more often, thank you for the great opportunity again." McKinley High School student

For more information about Get Connected, email Laurie Moline, United Way of Greater Stark County's Community Connectors Grant Coordinator, laurie.moline@uwstark.org