By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – There has been real concern that our students stay in school, graduate and go on to college but those rates have been growing. However, for most young people, that’s just a start. What happens next?

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Philly Fellows is a wonderful example of an opportunity to learn about the importance of the non-profit world and have a self-selected year working directly in agencies with free housing and healthcare, a monthly stipend and an education award of $5500 at the end of the internship.

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Placements are in universities, schools, foundations, and organizations with kids, English language learners, mentoring programs among others in measurable projects working to reach specific goals. Participants make connections with networks that will help them develop their public service careers.

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These experiences can clearly help broaden the view of the world of work as the program harnesses youthful energy in creating a model for civic engagement and a better Philadelphia.