Launched in 2019 in Southern New Jersey, Propel America is a multi-state nonprofit focused on empowering high school students with skills needed to transition into living-wage jobs. Sounds familiar, right? With missions aligned, Hopeworks and Propel are working together to provide youth with access and resources needed to be successful in life. Quanahz Adams and Michael McClain are evidence that we can make that happen quickly. The two Propel youth came to Hopeworks training in July and are already in their internships!
As high school seniors, both Quanahz and Michael had aspirations of going to college. When asked about what their plans were before Propel, both felt strongly about the need for a college education or postsecondary training. Propel was "another choice", Quanahz stated, and he became intrigued with learning about technology once he realized it would help him achieve his goal of creating a company that posted reviews of animations. He deferred that dream when he realized he didn't have the skills to create a website, but he’s confident he can achieve that now. As a new intern in the Hopeworks Web Department, Quanahz will sharpen those skills.
Michael knew that college was in his future, he was interested in studying business marketing to complement his already growing internet following. While in his senior year, Michael had attracted a large internet following by creating video content on social media. He’s using his skills and learning more about social media marketing as an intern in Hopeworks Communication Department.
Through the Hopeworks Townsend Scholars Fund, a program that pays for tuition at Camden Community College, both interns are registered for the Fall semester and well on their way to achieving their college goals.
When asked to describe Hopeworks in one word Michael responded, "Opportunity". Michael didn't realize that his opportunities were limited until he saw the many options available to youth in his new environment. Both youths agree that the opportunity and access door opened for them through Propel. Both Quanhaz and Michael have entrepreneurial spirits and are using their newfound social capital and skills at Hopeworks to propel them forward. Quanahz shared that,"Hopeworks is a phenomenal program and has been a great foundation for me."