Mayor Johnson, partners launch second year of summer jobs program for Dallas youth

Mayor Eric Johnson launches Dallas Works. In the background, from left to right: Usamah Rodgers, Marcia Page, Kelvin Walker, and Dale Petroskey.

DALLAS — Mayor Eric Johnson and partner organizations on Monday launched the second year of Dallas Works, the mayor’s summer jobs program for youth in the city.

Mayor Johnson also announced that Dallas residents between ages 15–24 will be eligible to participate in Dallas Works this year. Last year, the program was only open to high school students.

“Dallas is a city of dreamers of all ages, and it is critical to me that we help as many young people as we can achieve their dreams,” Mayor Johnson said. “This is an important initiative, and it is personal to me as someone who grew up in underserved communities here in Dallas — and as someone who will soon be raising three children in this great city.”

Mayor Johnson launched Dallas Works in February 2020 with the goal of eventually employing thousands of young people. He modeled the program on efforts in other cities such as Houston, Boston, Chicago, and New York, which have long had robust summer jobs programs — usually for people up to age 24 — that help employ thousands of people.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated economic fallout, Dallas Works helped connect 465 kids to job training and summer jobs at businesses, nonprofits, and governmental entities. That was more than in any single year of the program’s predecessor, the Mayor’s Intern Fellows Program.

Education is Freedom runs Dallas Works in partnership with the Office of the Mayor. Other partners include Dallas ISD, the Dallas Regional Chamber, the Dallas Citizens Council, and numerous private sector companies.

Although the COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing, Mayor Johnson and officials with the partner organizations on Monday encouraged Dallas businesses to help put young people to work this year.

“Together, we can build a better future for our city through Dallas Works,” Mayor Johnson said. “Together, we can set up our kids for success and set them on a path that will allow them to thrive for years to come. And together, we will bounce back from COVID-19 and continue to be a city of opportunity for all of our children.”

Information on the program’s eligibility and application deadlines can be found at DallasSummerJobs.org.

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