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Year Up gives young adults a leg up

June 1, 2014

WOONSOCKET – Jacob Jodoin knew he was in trouble.

He was plenty willing to work hard, but four years after graduating from the city’s technical high school, he’d held nothing but a series of dead-end jobs.

Sometimes he worked 17 hours a day, alternating between prep cook and delivery boy at a pizza parlor. His boss wouldn’t even pay him overtime.

“It was killing me,” says Jodoin, now 21. “I knew I had to do something.”
They say the darkest hour is right before the dawn, and in Jodoin’s case, it was literally true. Just as he was finishing up a pre-sunrise delivery shift at the pizza joint, he heard an ad on his car radio promoting a Providence-based organization called Year Up. They were reaching out to unemployed and underemployed high school graduates looking for a way to break into upwardly mobile, white-collar professions. His curiosity piqued, Jodoin went home, did some research, and within a few days he found himself in a face-to-face interview for a spot in Year Up’s next class.

Full story appears on page A1 in Monday's Call and Monday's Times.

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