NYF Past Activities

 

Native Youth Futures: Previous Years Activity Report

INTERNSHIPS: 

Tim Tallman is learning about building mechanical drawings at MAG Mechanical. Some of his job duties include doing measurements to determine amount of materials needed for a job, organizing the service vans, making pickups and deliveries, cleaning up and seeing how an HVAC installation and service business is run. Tim is considering going to college to get a 2 year HVAC degree which will guarantee him employment in the industry. 

Andrew Wade learning the retail Native crafts business at Northland Vision. Under the superb tutelage of the Bellanger family, Andrew is learning everything from intake, inventory and ordering to more "front of the house" activities like customer service, doing sales reports and even preparing tax payments. All the experience Andrew is getting at Northland Vision should help him when he pursues his own retail business idea. 

Anna Hunt working as a teller at Woodlands Bank. Learning: She is learning the finer tips of customer service and how to handle large amounts of money quickly and efficiently. Asked how this applies to her career path and future plans, she responds that she wants to be a Marine or a police officer, but she appreciates growing her customer service skills and respecting/working with privileged information.

Sophia Sarenpa works as an intern planning events for Pangea World Theater. She is in an administration position, while strengthening her creative, organizational, communication and Microsoft computer skills. The benefits of this position is giving her the experience “to own a theater one day or even be an agent for people”. She is excited about the additional knowledge that is being shown to her about actually running the business through an administrative viewpoint. Supervisor Dipankar Mukher expressed that Sophia is a great asset to the Pangea World Theater family and is being given opportunities to develop her own ideas that she is not backing down from. She will have something tangible, as she is creating a Indigenous Brochure for Pangea’s indigenous series. 

Josh Hill grinds the beans and serves the folks at the Powwow Grounds Cafe. He is in the Coffee Shop Technician position, while developing the art of beverage preparation, customer service, time management and some master of the custodial arts skills. Some of what he is learning through this position is that he must stay in school so he wont be stuck with a minimum wage type of position. As far as knowing how to run a business, he wrote that: “I would need people who know what they're doing” and he understands its importance. Supervisor, Ed Sayers, said Josh has been a quick learner, enjoys interacting with the customers and openly welcomes each task that is given. 

Annette Duran works the phones at State Farm insurance. She is in the Receptionist / Customer Service position, while developing professional communication and customer service skills. Some of what she is learning through this position is that the office / desk type of job does not fit her personality, but being in this position allows her to network with individuals that may be of benefit in her future endeavors. Supervisor, Dan Cheung, said Annette is in a fair starting position, nothing spectacular, nothing horrible, just that she needs to work on her customer service / communication skills and to liven it up. Otherwise, she has been working with a mentor who is assisting her throughout this process. 

Shania Thomson, Alfred Johnson, Alicea Weiser and Danielle Pineiro work as tech interns at MIGIZI Communications. They are earning: Photography, design skills and how to make websites using HTML, Digital Video Production, Comic Life and creating PowerPoints to tell our story. Asked how this applies to their career path and future plans, they said they appreciate gaining tech skills and computer experience, so that they could turn web design into a career or create their own website for a future business.

Chris Vargas is currently in the landscaping /  construction position, where he is focusing on building and selling the products. He feels he is strengthening and expanding the hard skills that is necessary for his business to be a success. He has built a connection with others who will be willing to help him start his business and work for him. His boss is showing him the the Income, expenses and profit aspect of running the business. Overall he is very confident in his abilities and with the skills that he is learning to make his idea possible.

Also...

Trinidad Flores works on community service projects at Wiconi Waste.

Christopher Barney and Aaron Thomson work as filmmakers for the Summer Media Institute

Ashley Barnes works with Minneapolis Public Schools

SUMMER SCHOOL: MIGIZI Communications' Native Youth Futures Entrepreneurship Specialists Brandon Bagaason and Comanche Fairbanks are teaching entrepreneurship to middle-school students at Minneapolis Public Schools' summer program, located at Seward Montessori school.

Students are working on the Junior Achievement BIZTOWN and It's My Business Curricula. They also have gone on field trips to local businesses such as Hymie's Records.

On July 16th, they had their Biztown "Capstone" experience, visiting the Maplewood Biztown facility for a day of simulated economic and civic activity. The Biztown staff said that the group who ran the Biztown newspaper and the radio station were some of the best that she's ever seen. Congratulations!

IDA SAVINGS ACCOUNTS: With new funding from the Northwest Area Foundation and partnerships with Woodlands Bank and the BiiGiiWiin Community Development Agency, we will soon be offering IDA accounts to NYF student participants. Students can save the money earned through their internships, and match their savings up to 3:1 through contributions made by MIGIZI. Students can then use their increased savings amount on payments for college tuition or other education related expenses, or other assets designed to promote economic self-sufficiency.

ENTREPRENEURSHIP COACHING: Our friends at the Neighborhood Development Center have been coaching our interns to develop their own business ideas and secure financing for their micro-enterprise projects. Three winners from the Entrepreneurship Fair and Business Plan Competition already have $1000 to spend on their start-up costs, courtesy of MicroGrants. All the participants are learning how to turn their concepts into feasible micro-enterprise ideas.

MIDDLE SCHOOL:

My Lemonade Stand Business Plan

Brandon Bagaason led students to create a start-up plan for a lemonade stand-- highlighting unique selling factors (flavors, signature drinks and side items), marketing strategies (branded t-shirts and cups, traditional poster/flyer promo and special offers), as well as identifying sales goals and steps to reach them. Plans include: Samantha’s Lemonade & Cookie Stand, Ava’s Smores Stand, Colorful Lemonade and Crazy Bear’s Lemonade.

Comanche Fairbanks led the JA “It’s My Business” curriculum, which took a look at what is an entrepreneur. Comanche also introduced a “Native Empowerment” curriculum that focuses on individual soft skills and values.  

The BizTown capstone experience and daily JA BizTown® instruction led by Brandon Bagaason covered: supply and demand, flow of economy, free enterprise, service vs. tangible product, job application and etiquette, how to write a check and make a deposit, business costs and pricing. 

Native Youth Futures made field trips to local businesses to meet with owners Dave Hoenack of Hymie’s Records and Stephanie Shimp of Blue Plate Restaurant Company/Longfellow Grill. As well as a special guest visit from owner Bob Rice of Pow Wow Grounds Coffee. 

Marie DeCoteau and Brandon Bagaason led instruction on Digital Storytelling through video (iMovie), illustration and still photo (Comic Life).

It was a great summer!

Native Youth Futures: Investing Today for Greater Prosperity Tomorrow is a three-year project, funded in part by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Native Americans and the Northwest Area Foundation, and is designed to break the cycle of inter-generational poverty that threatens the potential and promise of our youth in the Minneapolis American Indian community.

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