CARE (Career Awareness Related Experience) Program



The City of Columbia’s Career Awareness Related Experience (CARE) program’s goal is for Columbia’s youth to be ready to enter the workforce and become productive, self-sufficient citizens.  Since 1982, the CARE program has provided comprehensive services for Columbia’s youth that include:

·       job readiness training
·       paid real-world hands-on work experience
·       mentoring
·       soft skill development
·       career exploration 

The CARE program hires 14- to 20-year-olds who live in the City of Columbia, MO and/or attend a Columbia, MO school and places them at local businesses, where they gain much needed real-world hands-on work experience while getting paid.  One hundred percent of the trainees’ wages are paid by CARE, which is administered through the Columbia Parks and Recreation Department.

The CARE program is an excellent place for interns, practicum students, and volunteers to gain valuable experience.  In addition, each summer, we hire approximately 10 part-time summer employment support workers, and being an unpaid intern often times leads to becoming a paid summer staff member (if that is something that interests you).

Each semester, the CARE program benefits greatly from “employing” many unpaid interns/volunteers, and in return offers them many great learning experiences, such as working with a government agency, social services programming, and diverse populations.  CARE internships offer a balance of working hands-on with youth and administrative work.

The Armory Sports Center (701 East Ash Street), which is located at the corner of 7th St. and Ash St., is easy walking distance from the Mizzou, Columbia College, and Stephens College campuses.

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