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Support continues after graduation

CATS and its partners provide ongoing support to Bridging the Gap students even after graduation.

For the first year in the workforce, each student has a mentor. Urban teens often face workplace challenges unique to their background, and the program ensures the mentors are matched, then trained, in accordance with the learning that CATS and its partners have gained as the program has evolved.

The graduates also have access to mental health and social services.

CATS employs a workforce development coordinator whose full-time job is dedicated to Bridging the Gap students, advocating on their behalf, and development of innovative programs to help ensure their success. For example, a mini-workshop series starting in early 2012 combines opportunities for social networking with training in professional areas such as financial literacy. An alumni program is being designed to build a long-term community of Bridging the Gap graduates, with regular communications and opportunities to share their work experiences.