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Alicia Sasser Modestino Explains the Importance of Boston Summer Youth Employment Programs

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01/14/20 - BOSTON, MA. -Alicia Sasser Modestino poses for a portrait on Jan. 14, 2020. Photo by Ruby Wallau/Northeastern University
Portrait of Alicia Sasser Modestino.

The Gotham Gazette published an article reporting on the struggle to get a the Summer Youth Employment Program in New York City to function for students virtually given the new circumstances during the pandemic. The article also notes how Boston’s SYEP program developed in a differently due to research done on the benefits of the program. Alicia Sasser Modestino (PPUA & Economics, Associate Director of the Dukakis Center) explains how she and her colleagues presented a plan to Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, which outlined the benefits of SYEP. Modestino’s team at Northeastern researched the effects of SYEPs on youth and found that they help youth to learn more skills, better manage emotions and increase likelihood of employment and increased wages among Black and brown youth. Modestino and her team received support from the mayor and were able to carry out the program successfully throughout the summer.

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