2022 Program Application Closed

Since 1984, the Columbia Urban League has provided summer work

experience through its Science Technology Enrichment Program (STEP)

primarily for youth between the ages of 14 and 19.  Over the years,

employment has proven to be an effective strategy for helping youth to

become productive members of society by reducing disruptive behavior

and school dropout rates that often lead to juvenile delinquency and gang

involvement. We redirected this program to incorporate some Science,

Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). In today’s technological

work environment, STEM has become a pathway for livable income careers. ​

To be eligible to participate in the program, interested youth must complete

a STEP application. The application requires personal information, prior work

experience information, a personal reflection stating the applicant’s career

interest, why he/she would like to work this summer and a photocopy of

formal identification. 


For more information, contact



  • Participants must participate in orientation before receiving a job assignment, and participants must be in professional business attire. 

  • Parents are required to attend orientation sessions.

  • Placements usually last for two weeks.

  • Participants work twenty hours per week. 

  • Participants earn a $300 stipend upon completion of a two-week work assignment and receipt of required documentation.



  • To provide career shadowing to introduce participants to real-life work experience.

  • To mentor participants to increase their knowledge of business etiquette and work ethics.

  • To offer structured environments to help build participants’ self-esteem.

  • To encourage networking opportunities for exposure to different career fields.


​If accepted to participate in the program, the student and his/her parent (guardian) must attend a mandatory job-skills training/orientation before receiving a job assignment. After successful completion of two 20-hour workweeks, the participant will receive a $300.00 stipend and a certificate of completion.

*The start date for STEP placements is Monday, June 13, and end on Friday, July 29, in two-week cycles. Please note that this date is subject to change.

​**Although we desire to serve all eligible applicants, the number is students served by this program is contingent upon the amount of funding we receive.