Wednesday, July 5, 2017


$126.4 million budget creates the highest number of jobs for NYC youth in the program’s 54-year history 

  Mayor Bill de Blasio and DYCD Commissioner Bill Chong today announced the start of the 2017 Summer Youth Employment Program with a record 70,000 young New Yorkers employed at more than 11,000 worksites. SYEP, which runs through August 19, is the nation’s largest summer youth employment initiative. The program started in 1963 and provides New York City residents between the ages of 14 and 24 with up to six weeks of entry-level experience at worksites in all five boroughs.

SYEP also provides specialized programming for disabled, foster care, runaway/homeless and court-involved young people. Support includes workshops on job readiness, career exploration and financial literacy, and opportunities to continue education and social growth. Since the beginning of the de Blasio Administration, the number of vulnerable youth enrolled in SYEP increased from 1,000 in 2014 to more than 3,000 in 2017.

“Every kid in New York City should have the opportunity to explore their interests through their first job,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “For more than 50 years, the Summer Youth Employment Program has facilitated the kind of real world training and support necessary to prepare our most vulnerable children for their future careers. And now, we are leveraging the resources of the City, nonprofits and New York’s thriving business community to bring this opportunity to an unprecedented number of kids in all five boroughs.”

“Every year we give more and more young people the chance at an internship that could change the trajectory of their careers. This year, we’ll connect even more youth from across the five boroughs to meaningful opportunities. As a former SYEP participant, I gained invaluable experience that I took with me throughout my public service life,” said DYCD Commissioner Bill Chong. “I could not be more proud of leading an agency that runs a program that has been instilling confidence, a strong work ethic and important skills for hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers for more than a half-century.”

“SYEP has a long and important history in New York City – it provided me and so many of my colleagues in City government with our very first jobs. There’s no better way to deepen this tradition than to make bold new investments that open the doors of opportunity to more young people than ever before, including to the City's most vulnerable youth,” said Richard Buery, Deputy Mayor for Strategic Policy Initiatives. “I’m confident that this year’s participants will gain meaningful workplace experience that will build the foundation for lifelong career success.”

“Employers consistently say they want to hire young adults who possess work skills on day one. SYEP gives talented young people the training they need to be great employees and, for many, provides them with an early first job experience that will set them up for success in their future careers,” said Gabrielle Fialkoff, Senior Advisor to the Mayor and Director of the Mayor’s Office of Strategic Partnerships. “In partnership with the Center for Youth Employment, this program utilizes the City’s wealth of private, public and non-profit resources to create enriching opportunities for young New Yorkers. We are proud to do our part to give tomorrow’s leaders the opportunities they deserve.”

In addition to young people who get jobs as part of SYEP, hundreds of young adults will be employed through Ladders for Leaders, a nationally recognized employer-paid internship component of SYEP for youth aged 16-22. Ladders for Leaders connects high achieving high school and college students with paid, professional summer internships within leading large and small businesses, nonprofits and government agencies citywide. This summer, with the support of the Center for Youth Employment, the City placed over 1,700 students in Ladders for Leaders internships and served 3,050 young people who have been involved in the shelter, justice or foster care systems.

SYEP participants are connected to diverse opportunities at worksites that include government agencies, hospitals, summer camps, nonprofits, small businesses, law firms, museums, sports enterprises and retail:

·         Tech: AOL, AppNexus ,Techie Youth

·         Fashion: Coach, Macy’s, Ralph Lauren 

·         Cultural Institutions: American Museum of Natural History, New Museum, Museum of the Moving Image, The MET

·         Media: Emmis Communications, Discovery Communications, Entertainment Partners 

·         Retail: Modell’s, CVS, Walgreens

·         Health Care: Maimonides Hospital, Greater New York Hospital Association, Mount Sinai Health System

·         Real Estate: Rapid Realty , Tishman Speyer, HFZ Capital Group

·         Finance: Amalgamated Bank, Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, KPMG

·         Communications: Y&R, Interactive Advertising Bureau, Rubenstein PR

·         Law: The Legal Aid Society, Hughes Hubbard & Reed, United States Attorney's Office, Eastern District of New York

·         Nonprofits: The New York City Urban Debate League, Coalition For Hispanic Family Services, Digital Girls, Inc.

·         Government Agencies: NYC Police Department, NYC Department of  Environmental Protection, NYC Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene

DYCD also funds employment programs through In-School Youth; Out-of-School Youth; Opportunity Youth: Supported Work Experience; and the Young Adult Internship Program. More information can be found on the DYCD website. Work, Learn & Grow, a New York City Council-funded initiative, provides participants in SYEP and ISY who are between the ages of 14 and 24 and currently in school with career-readiness training and paid employment opportunities for up to 25 weeks from October through April.

For more information on SYEP and Ladders for Leaders, call 311 or Youth Connect at 1-800-246-4646. Also visit for a list of alternative job and internships throughout the City. Employers looking to support New York City’s youth employment programs should go to the Center for Youth Employment’s website ( employers can also email the Mayor’s Fund at for details.


  As a former Neighborhood Advisory Chair for DYCD I am very familiar with the SYEP program. After the 2010 census several NAB's were downsized because certain areas of the city no longer qualified for DYCD funding. I was no longer able to be a NAB Chair, let alone member because that downsizing included the area where I lived. 
  In looking at the 2016 assessment there was a borough breakdown of program providers, but there were no figures as to just how many jobs were provided by borough and by company or provider per borough.
  DYCD is given federal monies for this SYEP program, and I am sure that under the new administration more information will be required than what is provided to make sure the federal dollars are being spent the correct way.

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