SYEP Special Initiative Program – Emerging Leaders

Young Adults (Ages 16-24)
Youth Opportunity Hub
Two women sitting at a table holding heart shaped cookies.


The Summer Youth Employment Program Special Initiative Program – Emerging Leaders (SYEP-EL) is now recruiting participants. SYEP-EL is part of the nation’s largest youth employment program, connecting New York City youth between the ages of 14 and 24 with career exploration opportunities and paid work experience for six weeks throughout the summer.

Individuals of all ages will receive employment counseling and job placement services, help with benefits assessment and enrollment, access to the food pantry, free legal assistance, mental health support, and health & wellness programs.

Who is Eligible?

To apply for Emerging Leaders SYEP you must be between the ages of 14 and 24 and in one of the following categories:

  • In or aging out of Foster Care
  • Who are Runaways
  • Who are homeless living in/out of a shelter
  • Who are Justice/Court Involved
  • Receiving ACS Preventative Services
  • Who are receiving Cash Assistance from HRA and are referred through the Business Link from a caseworker

How can I apply?

Applications are now open here. Please enter the PIN #VY-91023 to access the application. All applicants will need:

  • Completed online application using the PIN
  • W-4; I-9;
  • Resume; A letter of support from a professional worker (with letterhead)
  • Proof of Identity
  • Proof of Employment Authorization
  • Selected Service (If applicable)
  • Proof of Age
  • Social Security Card
  • Working Papers (16-17-year-olds only)
  • Proof of Citizenship Status/Alien Status

What opportunities are available?

Older Youth (16-24) will receive paid Worksite Assignments at over 150 locations across the city. Past partners have included:

  • Entertainment (Hot. 97)
  • Retail Stores (CVS, Walgreens)
  • Administrative opportunities (ACS)
  • Summer Camps (Camp Counselors, Mentors, Basketball Coaches)
  • Maintenance (Schools, Church)

Younger Youth (14-15) will participate in project-based learning around topics including Digital Journalism and Business 101. Participants receive a weekly stipend.

In addition to these career readiness opportunities, SYEP-EL provides professional work attire, free lunch programs, and mental health support from an on-site Social Worker and agency staff.


Social Media:

For more information, please contact Michell Marin, Program Director at

Did you know?

Our wide variety of programs are available throughout the New York City Metropolitan Area! Browse our list of facilities to learn more about our core locations and program sites.