Char-Koosta News

The Official Publication of the Flathead Nation online

June 16, 2011

CSKT helps tribal youth cure the summertime blues

By Lailani Upham

CSKT Hot Springs Representative Tribal Council, member, Mike Kenmille, exhorts young men and women to keep reaching for their dreams at the DHRD Summer Youth Employment Job Fair, Monday, June 13. (Lailani Upham photo)
CSKT Hot Springs Representative Tribal Council, member, Mike Kenmille, exhorts young men and women to keep reaching for their dreams at the DHRD Summer Youth Employment Job Fair, Monday, June 13. (Lailani Upham photo)
PABLO — Approximately 22 Confederated Salish and Kootenai tribal departments and along with a few Salish Kootenai College programs and some outside businesses interviewed young job seekers for summer employment this past Monday.

Around 77 applicants showed up for the annual CSKT Summer Youth Employment Career Fair at the Two Eagle River Gym in hopes to land the job of their fit.

According to Renee Pierre, CSKT Summer Youth Program Manager, 70 young people will be put to work for six weeks. Funding is received from U.S. Department of Labor, she stated.

Kicking Horse Job Corps medical student Priscilla Raven discusses with students the importance of drug testing and the effects drugs have on the job. (Lailani Upham photo)
Kicking Horse Job Corps medical student Priscilla Raven discusses with students the importance of drug testing and the effects drugs have on the job. (Lailani Upham photo)
The summer employment will run from June 20 to July 29.

The Montana Educational Talent Search, Kicking Horse Job Corps and CSKT Tribal Health Youth and Wellness Coordinator Pearl Yellowman Caye offered job skill preparation services for students as they waited in line for interviews.

The Montana Educational Talent Search offer services to make certain students complete high school and enter college or vocational school. Talent Search is one of the TRiO programs (Talent Search, Upward Bound, Student Support Services) created in 1965 to provide equal opportunity for higher education to all Americans. It is funded by the U.S. Department of Education.

Cedric Earthboy, listens detail-for-detail during a job interview with a tribal department employee. (Lailani Upham photo)
Cedric Earthboy, listens detail-for-detail during a job interview with a tribal department employee. (Lailani Upham photo)
Rene Dubay and Silas Perez with the Montana Talent Search offered career exploration, tips on interviewing and basic job seeking skills. The groups were broken up in two parts.

One method used was role-playing, where one student acted as the employer and the other as job applicant, Perez explained. “The students really got into the roles. It was a way to demonstrate a good applicant and a bad one. It was just a way for them (students) to explore the process of interviewing,” he said.

 Victoria Peterson opts to take her first interview of the day with Norrie Dusty Bull, CSKT Tribal Contracts and Grants Department, for the receptionist position. (Lailani Upham photo)
Victoria Peterson opts to take her first interview of the day with Norrie Dusty Bull, CSKT Tribal Contracts and Grants Department, for the receptionist position. (Lailani Upham photo)
Kicking Horse Job Corps, located south of Ronan, is a free education and career technical training program administered by the U.S. Department of Labor and operated by CSKT that help young people ages 16 through 24 with career technical and academic training.

KHJC medical students, Priscilla Raven and Antonio Trembly discussed the effects of drugs and alcohol regarding employment. “We both went over why employers do drug testing and the myths that are there about tampering with drug tests,” Raven said. “Some of the myths were drinking bleach or vinegar. We told them it does not work, and does more harm to the body,” she added.

Students tune in to interviewers in hopes to land the position they want during the DHRD Summer Youth Employment Job Fair. (Lailani Upham photo)
Students tune in to interviewers in hopes to land the position they want during the DHRD Summer Youth Employment Job Fair. (Lailani Upham photo)
Raven said the students were very engaged and asked several questions. “They seemed scared at first, then after awhile they were very attentive and reacted so well to all the information and questions.”

Yellowman Caye pumped up the kids prior to interviews on career exploration, professionalism, teamwork and healthy work habits. “I was just excited to be a part of the process,” she said. Yellowman Caye said she covered discussions in career interest and had the students take some quick personality and characteristic analysis to help in job matches.

“Last year there was a lot of idle time before the interviewing and we wanted to make the best of their time while they wait,” she added.

Montana Talent Search coordinator Silas Perez, discusses with a group of summer youth employment participants the magnitude of job seeking skills. (Lailani Upham photo)
Montana Talent Search coordinator Silas Perez, discusses with a group of summer youth employment participants the magnitude of job seeking skills. (Lailani Upham photo)
“In one exercise we used was to help students speak up,” Yellowman Caye said. One question was whether a tribal member should receive money at 18 or 21, and why, she explained. The outcome was half and half she said. “The exercise is way to empower them on certain issues and concerns,” she explained.

DHRD Summer Youth Employment begins accepting applications in March of each year and receives the applications for eight weeks.

For more information on the CSKT DHRD Summer Youth Employment Program, call Renee Pierre at (406) 675-2700, ext. 1308.

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