Youth Employment Services (YES)

YES Students picture collage

What is YES?

YES stands for Youth Employment Services. We work with Champaign Unit 4 students ages 14 and up. We provide curriculum around essential job skills such as communication, time management, critical thinking, teamwork, and leadership. Our students participate in a real career fair every spring where they meet and interview with local businesses - eventually being matched to a job in a career field that interests them. We want to ensure our students have access to the tools necessary to build a solid post-high school plan for success.

Our Mission

"Creating a YES for every student."

Our Vision

We will ensure any student seeking career readiness and skill development has access to the support needed to set them up for success.

Our Values

  • Support 

  • Knowledge

  • Influence

  • Listening

  • Leadership 

  • Success

Participation Levels

In order to achieve our mission of creating a YES for every student, we offer two levels of student participation: 

  • YES Classic - 

    • Our most popular level of participation

    • Summer job placement is guaranteed

    • Ideal for our younger students or those with less job experience

    • Attendance required at all major program events through the year 

  • YES Select - 

    • Great for those already working independently

    • Allows for support where it's needed most

    • Get help with online applications, building resumes, interview prep

    • Attendance welcome but not required at program events

Program Components

YES Orientations (Fall Semester)
Provide a quick overview of the program's calendar, participant expectations, and what is provided at the Classic level for students. Critical paperwork is covered at these sessions, setting students up for quick processing once their job assignments are made in the spring.

YES Study Sessions (Fall and Spring Semester)
YES Study Sessions provide training and hands-on learning for important career readiness skills such as communication, teamwork, time management, problem solving, and leadership. Students also learn how to create a resume and how to gain confidence with interviews and networking. This component is required for participants at the Classic support level.

One Big Career Fair (Spring Semester)
The One Big Career Fair is an annual event where YES participants are able to meet and interview with potential summer employers. This event is required for participants at the YES Classic support level. 

YES Connect* (Spring Semester)
YES Connect offers participants at either support level the chance to dig deeper into their ideal career field. This component provides opportunities to engage with speakers from specific industries, attend specialized workshops for their chosen career field, explore pathways to careers, and create actionable goals to get them where they want to go. 

*This is a new component for Spring 2024.

YE$ Prep (Summer)
YE$ Prep is our paid training week for students participating at the YES Classic support level. The focus for this week will center on topics that are specific to YES-sponsored job placements such as tracking your hours worked and completing new hire paperwork. YE$ Prep consists of 10 paid hours over a period of five days and will occur during the first week of June, prior to jobs beginning. This event is required for all Classic students.

YES-Sponsored Summer Job (Summer)
Participants at the Classic level will be placed with a summer job for six weeks during June and July. They will have the opportunity to work up to 105 hours during that time period and will be assigned a Worksite Coordinator through the program. Worksite Coordinators will provide ongoing support and communication to ensure each participant's summer job placement is successful and meaningful.

*We may have some employers who choose to hire their student(s) directly, which can change some details of those specific jobs.

New to YES? Returning Student?

Forms for 2023-2024 are here!

If you have never participated with YES but want to join us this year, please complete the New Participant Form HERE.

If you are a returning YES student, please complete the Returning Student Update Form HERE.

We can't wait to work with you this year!

COMING SOON: Newsletter Access

Stay tuned for updated info on our Monthly Newsletter access...

Thank you to our partners!

These partners help make our program possible.

Champaign Unit 4

City of Champaign

Champaign County Community Coalition

Contact YES

We would love to hear from you! Please email to get in touch.

And don't forget to follow us on our social media pages:

  • Facebook: @YESChampaign

  • Instagram: @yes.champaign