Newark Youth Career Pathways

April 2024

Founded in 2019, the Newark Youth Career Pathways (NYCP) program is a collaborative initiative committed to improving the post-secondary success of Newark students. NYCP bridges the gap of access and coordination through program implementation during the school day and by serving as the intermediary between youth development programs and schools. NYCP is led by Executive Director Kaleena Berryman, an innovative Newark leader who is a strong advocate for youth and parent empowerment and community engagement. The program currently serves 350 students (high school juniors and seniors) across 21 technical education programs in six Newark Public and Essex County Vocational Schools (West Side, Eagle Academy, University High School, Newark Tech, Donald Payne Tech, and West Caldwell Tech). Students benefit from the year-long Newark Youth Career Pathways program, which provides weekly courses from program partners: Abbott Leadership Institute (ALI), Early Learning Financial Literacy (ELFLP), Goode Education Group (GEG), Leaders of the 21st Century (LOT21), and Rutgers Newark Center for PreCollege Programs (RUN-CPP); a five-year post-secondary plan development and support, and work-based learning.

Most recently, Essex County Technical Schools, in partnership with NYCP, was awarded a $1.4 million annual/multi-year Career Connected High Schools grant as part of the U.S. Department of Education’s Raising the Bar: Unlocking Career Success Initiative. This grant expands the Newark Youth Career Pathways program from a two-year to a three-year program, starting in the Sophomore year for 200 students. Through this grant, students will also participate in three paid summer work experiences in partnership with Summer Youth Employment, earn 12 dual enrollment credits from Rutgers Newark, and at least one industry credential from Goode Education Group.

In December 2023, Schumann Fund awarded $30,000 to NYCP in operating support. NYCP’s efforts are aligned with Schumann Fund’s early childhood & education program priority and are advanced under the strategy of Essex County direct-service.

“Newark Youth Career Pathways is excited to have the Schumann Fund of New Jersey as a partner in developing the next generation of career ready, future focused, purpose driven, community rooted workforce leaders. We collaborate with organizations dedicated to community economic mobility to create an ecosystem of development, support, and investment for youth to thrive after high school.”

– Kaleena Berryman, Executive Director, NYCP