ABERDEEN, Md. (December 7, 2017)— Benfield Electric announced today it will sponsor Aspire, a new workforce development program from the Harford County nonprofit, Linking All So Others Succeed (LASOS, Inc.). The Aspire program is designed to assist at-risk youth in Harford County through an alternative high school education experience and internship placement for individuals age 16-24.
LASOS provides educational programs and services free of charge to non-native English-speaking residents and community members as young as 6 months old who live in Harford County. By launching Aspire, the nonprofit is working to combat the growing problem of youth who struggle with traditional schooling dropping out of high school, and therefore lacking the education to transition into self-sufficient adults. Aspire aims to provide a proactive approach to this challenge through mentoring, providing the opportunity for youth to set goals and getting their foot in the door at a viable place of employment.
The program is funded in part by Benfield Electric, a Maryland-based, family-owned and operated electrical contractor, and a long-term LASOS partner. Students intern with the company, which pays for their certificate program, and then transition into full-time employees. The president and CEO himself, Greg Benfield, directly helps LASOS students, meeting with them personally and connecting them with a mentor.
“Benfield Electric is pleased to partner with an organization focused on building our future workforce,” says Benfield. “LASOS provides dedicated employees to our company, and we are proud to give back through sponsoring Aspire.”
Aspire is accepting program registration beginning December 15, 2017. Interested families and participants can register in-person at LASOS, which is located at 33 W Courtland Street in Bel Air. The program is also seeking qualified business partners to provide internship opportunities. Melynda Velez, Executive Director of LASOS, notes companies must have the capacity to work with youth and build interpersonal relationships.
“Aspire provides a tremendous opportunity for businesses to engage and invest in our future community,” explains Velez. “The program combines mentoring and interning to create lasting relationships between companies and the next generation of employees.”
For more information about LASOS and Aspire, visit www.lasos.org.