ROME – Hundreds of students are going to camp to help prepare them to join Maine’s workforce.
You wouldn’t think going to a camp in the middle of October would help these students get prepared for life after high school, but Jobs for Maine’s Graduates, or JMG, has transformed Pine Tree Camp into the leadership education conference for the 500 middle and high school students who attended.
Matt St. John, the Director of Operations at JMG, says the conference is full of competitive sessions and workshops that are meant to help the students long-term.
“What we do in the classrooms and some of the official partnerships that we make with different businesses and different community entities, those things I think students would say are really unique. We offer a different learning experience for students that again, the ultimate goal for our kids in JMG is for them to pursue a meaningful career,” St. John says.
One of the workshops is JMG’s version of a Shark Tank named ‘Lobster Tank.’ The workshops are all designed to build social, leadership and critical thinking skills so students can help solve Maine’s workforce shortage.
“This year’s theme is Maine Needs U. We use the letter U, as in unique, and we’re really asking students, what skills do you have that are unique that you can provide to Maine’s workforce?”
Paige Ford, a senior at Houlton High School, says she sees the benefit of the conference.
“I’ve learned a lot of teamwork skills because I’m meeting new people and I’m learning how to associate with them, and I think that’s awesome because you might come across them in the future. Because I’ve never focused on marketing and that type of stuff but we’ve been really focusing on that and I actually love it, I didn’t realize that before,” Ford says.
To learn more about JMG, visit JMG’s website.