Community Impact through Work Experience
As a South Omaha native, Jacqueline Gomez has long wanted to give back to the community that raised her. Through the WIOA Youth program, Jacqueline had the opportunity to do just that.
This summer, Jacqueline participated in the WIOA Title 1 Youth Work Experience Program as a Community Outreach Intern for the Office of Senator Tony Vargas (Nebraska State Senator). She met with business owners and community leaders in South Omaha, with the goal of improving the lives of people in her community.
“I was able to contribute with community work,” she says.” Being from South Omaha, I felt like I was giving back to my community at such a young age.”
While Jacqueline learned a lot from local leaders and state senators, the WIOA Youth internship taught her a lot about herself, too.
“I recall I was kind of scared at first,” she says. “The more I did it the more comfortable I got. I really enjoyed it because I just learned more about what this type of work really requires.
I was able to better my communication skills and learned how to approach people and keep them engaged.”
For Jacqueline, the highlight of the WIOA internship was meeting Senator Tony Vargas. “Him and I were from the same background. Talking to him and seeing how down to earth he is, I really appreciated that because you don’t see that a lot. I felt like ‘wow’ the Senator is actually talking to me and listening to me. It was inspiring.”
Since the internship has ended, Jacqueline is now focusing on her next chapter. This fall, she will be attending the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. She plans to major in Political Science. As for her future, Jacqueline says she aspires to help the community that she grew up in. “I would like to be a lawyer and an elected official for South Omaha.”