IAP’19 Joseph Edward- Just-A-Start Youthbuild
This IAP I continued my work study from the fall at Just-A-Start YouthBuild, a non-profit organization in Cambridge committed to helping out of school youth complete their HiSET, the equivalent to a GED, and gain employment in the construction industry. I was really excited to sign up to work at JAS because I love their mission and I think mentoring young adults with a lot of potential is incredibly worthwhile. While this drew me in, I stayed to work at JAS because the staff and students have such strong, familial relationships. They all were deeply invested in whether students were getting enough sleep, applying for jobs they wanted and feeling safe. I tutored students in Writing, Math, Science and Reading. Despite the fact that many of the students I tutored had jobs and family to take care of, they were very committed to learning, getting their HiSET completed and planning for the future. These students inspired me to take my work ethic to a new level and appreciate my privilege. I also enjoyed working with people and making a difference in the learning experience of others. It felt great to learn that a student I tutored had passed their final test. I noticed that instructors on staff were innovative and engaging in their teaching, and I learned a lot about teaching from observing them. I think that this work study benefitted not only the students and JAS staff, but also benefitted me as a teacher and person.