Program seeks to provide summer employment

Jobs in the Park aids students in resume, application completion


Kaia Myers

Jobs in the Park provides summer employment to students at many places within the city, including the Westwood Hills Nature Center. According to St. Louis Park, positions include junior naturalist coordinator or playground naturalist.

Dani Orloff and Noah Orloff

As sophomore Marcos Alvarez reflects on his time volunteering at a St. Louis Park park during the summer, he said it was a fulfilling experience.

“It’s really fun. You get to hang with kids, make activities and you get a lot of job experience and volunteer experience for college and stuff like that,” Alvarez said.

According to officer Pam Gronski, the Jobs in the Park program is a partnership between officers in school and departments within the city that aim to provide summer employment opportunities for students.  

According to Gronski, three meetings will be held after school March 19 to 21 to learn about jobs available, create resumes, fill out job applications, prepare for interviews and possibly tour job locations within the city. Gronski said representatives from the city will attend the meetings to answer questions.

“At each meeting, we’ll feed all the kids,” Gronski said. “We’re hoping that transportation will be arranged through the students and their parents but we will be available to do some transporting on a minimal basis.”

Alvarez said the program presents advantages to both participants and St. Louis Park.  

“It’s a great idea for people especially who probably would not get as many jobs or it could increase the jobs for St. Louis Park and help our park’s program and our whole recreation situation,” Alvarez said.

According to Gronski, the Jobs in the Park program began last year and includes students from all over the city.

“We had about 20 kids from SLP come to the meetings and about half of them or a little more than half all had summer employment,” Gronski said.

Alvarez said students who are older will have greater opportunities and be paid for their work.

“Obviously, it was volunteer work because of my age. But if you are 16 you can get paid for it,” Alvarez said. “It’s very fun, fulfilling, and it’s in the summer.”

Gronski said participants in the program last year may be able to secure future job opportunities.   

“If you do well, they’ll be the first ones that are called back for those positions this year,” Gronski said. “We have many of the employees that work in our city departments started off during the summer employment and often it works into full-time employment.”

According to Gronski, students interested in attending the Jobs in the Park workshops can sign up in the student office. Gronski said the meeting March 19 will be in C350 and the meetings March 20 to 21 will be in room C155, all ending at 6 p.m.