Meet Amiir Johnson, a 17-year old senior at Stratford STEM Magnet High School. A long-time resident of Nashville, Amiir grew up surrounded by poverty and didn’t really find his own direction until he started the Jobs for Tennessee Graduates program.
He says, “For me, JTG has built my confidence toward going out and getting a job. I feel like it has helped me improve my skills, such as talking with other people, how to represent myself in an interview, and work toward getting a job. I didn’t know how to build a resume, or even what a resume was, before I got to JTG. Now I have a full resume and a bunch of added bonuses to present. It lets me know that I can get a job with my resume and knowing what to do in an interview.”
He says his future was uncertain had he not been in the JTG program. He says, “Without JTG, when I graduate, I probably would have no clue what to do. Before JTG, I never had a resume, I didn’t have a job, and I didn’t really have to do anything. But now, it has taught me that I can stand on my own feet and get out there.” Now, Amiir will attend Nashville State for two years upon graduation, and he plans to transfer to either the University of Alabama or Middle Tennessee State University his junior year to study chemical or electrical engineering.
Amiir regrets a lot of his decisions and approach to education his first two years of high school. He didn’t place much emphasis on his education or his future after graduation, citing many times where he skipped school and made choices to run with the wrong crowd and get into trouble. For him, the JTG program, and the influence of his school’s JTG Specialist, Daniel Smith, is solely what refocused his energy, instilled confidence, and has given him hope that he has a future now.
“I know that I have the skills and the confidence to compete with others in a job interview. I’m ready to walk in and present myself in a way that can get me the job I want,“ he says, his eyes beaming with pride.
Amiir believes that all students, especially those from backgrounds of poverty, should have access to JTG to give them a hope and a future. He says, “If all students in every school had access to the JTG program, it would drastically over time decrease the unemployment rate.” A naturally charismatic person, Amiir now has the self-confidence to pursue whatever path he chooses.
JTG is committed to expanding its program to even more schools throughout the state, and it is through generous donations that we are able to do so. Please visit our Connect/Donate page to make a difference in a life like Amiir’s.