Northern Advantage job center looking to help Rhinelander youth find work
Serena Adler has helped hundreds of youth after they have dropped out of high school for various reasons in her 13 years at the Northern Advantage Job Center.
“We help them fill out applications, create a resume, perfect their interview skills and help them with their job search,” Adler said. “We also help them with some of their skills that helps build self esteem.”
Adler, who is a youth team leader at Northern Advantage, has helped many people in the past but faces a problem-not as many people have been showing up needing help of late.
“Some people might think that that is a good thing, that less people are not needing to find work,” Adler said. “But I don’t think that is the case.”
Adler said she fears that area youth who would be eligible for the program do not know it exists or where to find the Northern Advantage Office.
The program covers a wide area with the Rhinelander office partnering with five counties and most years, the group helps about 180 individuals.
Adler said that number is down by 20 people in recent years, a drop they didn’t expect.
“We need to get the word out their to these out of school youths that this program is available,” Adler said.
The program is funded by the Federal government on a need basis so making sure everyone who is eligible to participate does take part is crucial to keep the funding.
“We can help people pay for stuff,” Adler said. “We can help them get into a GED program, pay for their testing. We have paid for short term training in the past. We have even helped people become CNA certified.”
Northern Advantage works with schools and social services to try and identify those in need and had a booth at recent job fair in Rhinelander.
“Anything we can do to get the word out there and reach these youths,” Adler said.
The program is for students 14-21 but Adler said the area that she is focusing on is the 18-21 year olds.
“We have a great relationship with the school and they refer the younger students to us,” she said. “It is that older group that doesn’t have someone to refer them to us that we need to reach.”
To join the program, Adler said it is as easy as just coming into the Northern Advantage’s office at 51-A Brown Street in downtown Rhinelander and filling out an application.
“All they need to do is come in and fill out an application and we will work with them on their eligibility,” she said.
For more information about this program or any programs offered at the Northern Advantage Job Center, call 715-365-1500.