Citi Foundation Announces $4.8 Million Investment in Summer Jobs Connect to Jumpstart Career Readiness of More than 2,000 Youth

A Key Component of Pathways to Progress, Initiative Provides First-Time Employment Opportunities, Coupled with Financial Capability
Feb 26, 2016 10:30 AM ET

Washington, D.C., February 26, 2016 /3BL Media/ – Today, as part of the announcement of the Summer Opportunity Project and Champions of Change event at the White House, the Citi Foundation announced a $4.8 million grant to Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund to provide more than 2,100 low-income youth with summer jobs and access to financial education as part of Summer Jobs Connect. The program, a part of the Citi Foundation’s Pathways to Progress initiative, uses the opportunity of a first-employment experience to instill early career readiness lessons and positive financial behaviors for lifelong success.

“Since we launched Summer Jobs Connect over two years ago, we have seen many stories on how a summer job can become a teachable moment for young people,” said Brandee McHale, President of the Citi Foundation. “We are thrilled to renew our support for this program and to be part of President Obama’s collective movement across this country to provide meaningful opportunities for young people during the summer that can become onramps towards career success.”

“America is strongest when we field a full team, and that means the public and private sector working seamlessly to ensure that young people have meaningful opportunities to contribute,” said U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez. “In communities across the country, partnerships like Summer Jobs Connect and organizations like the Citi Foundation are helping expand access to life-changing opportunities for young people that can help set them on a pathway for long term career success.”

“A summer job is a critical opportunity to start young people on a path to a strong financial future,” said Jonathan Mintz, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund. “The Citi Foundation’s partnership and investment of nearly $14 million since 2014, through the CFE Fund’s Summer Jobs Connect initiative, is helping youth in cities across the country learn key skills, connect to the mainstream financial system and manage their paychecks responsibly. We applaud the White House, with their Summer Opportunity Project, and other national and local leaders who are supporting the promise of summer jobs.” 

Summer Jobs Connect is a key component of the Citi Foundation's Pathways to Progress initiative, a three-year, $50 million commitment to connect low-income youth in the United States with opportunities to develop the workplace skills and leadership experience that are critical to compete in a 21st century economy.

Building on the successes of existing Summer Youth Employment Programs, Summer Jobs Connect ensures that youth receive on-the-job training and are also connected to meaningful financial education. Summer jobs, often the first experience youth have with formal employment, serve as a natural opportunity to provide education on managing finances, an important foundation for financial stability.

The eight Summer Jobs Connect city partners are Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, Newark, New York City, San Francisco, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C. The CFE Fund and the Citi Foundation are working to empower these eight cities’ programs and inform dozens of other cities’ as they begin to similarly build financial empowerment work into their programs.

To further the lessons and models that are core to this program, CFE Fund recently released a new series of reports and best practices, Summer Jobs Connect: Building Sustainable Banking and Savings Programs in Summer Youth Employment. This three-report compendium details city partners' strategies to provide banking access and targeted financial education as part of their local SYEP programs, and how they are working to sustainably embed these efforts into their program infrastructure.


About the Citi Foundation

The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the lives of people in low-income communities around the world. We invest in efforts that increase financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities for youth, and reimagine approaches to building economically vibrant cities. The Citi Foundation's "More than Philanthropy" approach leverages the enormous expertise of Citi and its people to fulfill our mission and drive thought leadership and innovation. For more information, visit  

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