When speaking with LaCresha McManus, Director of Citywide Teen Services, about the new Club LIT program, a wave of excitement rushed over her.
LIT—which stands for Leaders In Training—began as a program primarily for teens attending our summer camp, Camp Mendocino.
At its core, LIT is a job readiness, character development, and service learning program that enables youth to become leaders in San Francisco and beyond.
Today, we’re excited to announce that we’re taking that same model, enhancing the program curriculum, and opening up the opportunity to high school members in all of our Clubhouses, not just Camp. This development will give even more teens (twice as many, in fact) the opportunity to participate and benefit from the program.
Premier Curriculum & Experiences for Teens
Over the last 24 months, LaCresha and her team of high school services directors, senior leadership, Club members and alumni, have developed some of the most innovative and potentially impactful activities, experiences and program curriculum for teens.
Club LIT is an 18-week-long program, chock full of workshops, hands-on activities, and even professional certificate programs, like First Aid and CPR.
Each participant is placed at one of 7 departments in our Clubhouses—Athletics, Creative Arts, Youth Development, Education, Front Desk, and Middle and High School Services. For each track, teens will learn a “hard skill” (like graphic design in the Arts department) and a complimentary “soft skill” (such as how to give and receive feedback on a creative project).
In addition, participants will be given the opportunity to deepen their professional skills by participating in mock interviews and creating a professional portfolio–which will include a cover letter, job application, resume, and a sample thank you email or card to potential employers.
Graduates of the program will receive new professional attire to wear to their job interviews (via a budgeting component of the program and thanks to our partnerships with Dress for Success SF), a $500 VISA gift card, and graduating seniors will be connected to summer employment opportunities with corporate partners like United Airlines and SF Giants.
Collective Learning & Growth
One of the more unique features of the program is something called, “contributing to the discipline.” Simply put, as a participant progresses in a given track, they will be learning a plethora of new information and building knowledge of best practices for a given skill or area of expertise.
For instance, someone on the Education track will be tasked with developing an educational activity that is fun and engaging for younger members. What they learn in the process will be documented and shared with the entire cohort and staff. This document will then be built into a citywide Best Practices guide for all to learn from.
This feature is not only a great way to build collective knowledge, but also allow teens to co-develop and enhance the program’s curriculum for future participants.
Hey, Teens — Stay Tuned!
This month kicks off our first Club LIT program cohort—45 teens across the city. The next program will start in January and applications will be available soon.
If you’re interested in joining the program or learning more, contact your Clubhouse high school services director.