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Evansville, IN – Students from nine high schools recently participated in the Region 11 Career Development Conference. The students are part of the Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) program and compete each year locally with winners advancing to the State competition.

JAG students compete in 12 different categories either as a class or individually. Competitions are judged by local business representatives and community leaders. Class competitions include Chapter Brochure, Chapter Commercial, and Entrepreneurship Plan. Individual competitions include Cover Design, Career Presentation, Creative Solutions, Critical Thinking, Employability Skills, Financial Literacy, Public Speaking, Writing Skills, and Outstanding Senior.

Students advancing to the State competition on March 17, 2023, include:

Chapter Brochure:  Pike Central High School

Chapter Commercial: Princeton Community High School

Entrepreneurship Plan: Southridge High School

Cover Design: Ivy Cook, Pike Central High School

Career Presentation: Joselyn Hernandez, Southridge High School

Creative Solutions: Karen Torres, Jasper High School

Critical Thinking: Rya Graves, Pike Central High School

Employability Skills: Justin Leeds, Pike Central High School

Financial Literacy: Kaylea Harlen, Southridge High School

Public Speaking: Genesis Pena, Jasper High School

Writing Skills: Samantha Pickel, Vincennes Lincoln High School

Outstanding Senior: Shelby Neese, Pike Central High School

The JAG program provides services to young adults to help them get a high school diploma or equivalent, secure a quality entry-level job or pursue post-secondary education that leads to advancement in their career field. 

JAG is a state-based, national non-profit organization within the Indiana Department of Workforce Development (DWD).  In DWD’s Region 11, including Vanderburgh, Posey, Pike, Perry, Gibson, Knox, Warrick, Spencer, and Dubois counties, the program is administered within the WorkOne system and directed by the region’s Workforce Development Board.

In Region 11, the JAG program started in the 2007-2008 school year at Vincennes Lincoln High School. It is now offered in nine high schools – Evansville Bosse, Mt. Vernon, Southridge, Vincennes Lincoln, Pike Central, Tell City, Princeton Community, Gibson Southern, and Jasper.

A JAG specialist in each school leads, guides, and encourages the students as they participate throughout the school year in a number of classroom activities and projects, including career presentations, creative solutions, critical thinking, public speaking, writing, and financial literacy. In addition to structured activities, the JAG specialists provide counseling, understanding, and encouragement.

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