Ready to take the next step in your career? Visit the career center closest to you. Learn more.

August 5, 2015

All around San Diego, CONNECT2Careers (C2C) continues to match young adults with first job experiences that teach them invaluable lessons they will carry into the future. But here’s something you might be surprised to find out—most of that matching is being done by young adults just like them.

C2C employs a powerhouse group of four young adults whose first job experience is bettering youth employment opportunities for their peers. In addition to each carrying their own caseload of students to guide through the C2C application and placement process, the C2C intern team acts as valuable consultants to what is and isn’t going to reach youth. Each day they are making calls, sending text messages and assisting at events—offering peer-level interaction that proves to be the most effective training method to prepare young adults for the world of work.

Four interns, all of whom came to C2C in very different ways, are making a huge impact:

Loreal Cooper applied to C2C because she was looking for a better work opportunity. Although she was not initially selected for an interview when she applied to be a C2C intern, Cooper attended a C2C-hosted mock interview event at San Diego City College where she gained the tools to improve her résumé and interview skills. The training led to an interview with the C2C team, who decided to hire her.

“While working at C2C I have found my passion and my love for informing and guiding youth towards meaningful employment,” Cooper says. “It absolutely makes my day when I build a meaningful relationship with a participant or hear a young adult telling me that I’ve helped them out in their job search.”

When Izaac Vizcarra heard about C2C through his housing program, he instantly looked up the program, created a profile, and signed up for a work-readiness training happening the very next weekend. The training included group projects based on problem solving and teamwork, which Vizcarra says boosted his confidence level and prepared him to begin applying to jobs. When Program Specialist Stephen Colón followed up with Izaac a week later, he informed him that he had been applying and had even attended an interview, but had not been hired. Colón offered Vizcarra an interview for a C2C internship, which he gladly accepted.

“I’ve been involved in many nonprofit programs on the other side of the fence, as a participant either looking for a job or receiving support services,” says Vizcarra. “Now I’m in a position to help out youth that share similar struggles and get them started on a new path in life.” Working with youth has always been a passion for Vizcarra and he is currently enrolled in Child Development coursework.

Pedro Gallardo found out about C2C in April as he was starting to think about obtaining a job as part of his summer plans. A simple web search for “San Diego youth summer employment” led him to and he decided to RSVP for a work-readiness workshop. The 3-hour workshop boosted his confidence and left him eager to start the job search. Shortly after, he received a call notifying him of an opportunity to interview for a position as a C2C intern and, shortly after that, one telling him he got the job.

“I have really appreciated being able to work with the CONNECT2Careers team and, more importantly, so many motivated, cooperative and enthusiastic youth from around San Diego,” says Gallardo. “By working with them and learning about their backgrounds, interests, and future plans, they have certainly been a testament to the great future that lies ahead for San Diego’s workforce. I am so excited to see the things they accomplish during and beyond their summer employment.”

Nathan Glovinsky was first introduced to C2C after a Program Specialist who he had worked with at another nonprofit suggested he take a look. He created an account and used C2C’s help to clean up his résumé and begin his summer job search, which led to an internship with C2C.

“To me, summer means time for relaxation and Netflix binges, but it also means time for exploring interests and learning new things; both of which can be achieved with a summer job,” Glovinsky says. “When the chance to intern at the San Diego Workforce Partnership as a C2C intern presented itself, I knew this was a perfect opportunity to learn more about labor policy and governance while assisting fellow youth in the community. Learning how to balance my schedule as an independent young adult is a new-found skill I attribute to working in the summer.”

To get involved with C2C, contact Stephen Colón at (619) 228-2933 or

    Connect With Us
    Stay in the know

    The Workforce Partnership is dedicated to providing San Diego Residents with the most up-to-date resources for finding a career.

    Subscribe to our newsletter.