By Mike Dunn

By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A program that places Philadelphia high schoolers into paying summer internships has an ambitious goal for the coming summer.

The program, “WorkReady Philadelphia,” last summer placed 6,800 high school students into internships.  This year, Mayor Nutter wants to increase participation by about one-third.

“I’m challenging the entire city of Philadelphia to come together and create 10,000 summer jobs for 2013.”

The problem is money.  Last summer, WorkReady Philadelphia struggled to pay for the 6,800 positions, each of which costs about $1,700.

So, hitting the 10,000 mark won’t be easy.  But Stacy Holland, CEO of the Philadelphia Youth Network, which runs WorkReady Philadelphia, is optimistic they can hit this lofty goal.

“If we are willing to take a chance on a young person, they will thrive as they transition from their secondary into their post-secondary experience,” she said today.

Mayor Nutter said letters will go out to local businesses about sponsoring the internships.  And he warned that local CEOs may get a call for a little mayoral arm-twisting.

“I’m going to be calling you personally,” the mayor said.  “It will be a very short conversation.  It will be mostly one-way.  You will just say ‘yes.’ ”

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