VR Comes to After-School

The Future of Career Exploration

ASAS | 15 June 2023

Since January, nearly 500 All-Star students in Cleveland, Los Angeles, Miami, and Newark have been using virtual reality learning modules to explore career options that align with their skills and interests. The “Stars at Work” program, a collaboration with immersive learning company Transfr, provides All-Stars with access to VR simulations and hands-on experiences in a variety of fast-growing jobs and industries.

Transfr’s virtual reality curriculum covers 23 careers, including automotive trades, manufacturing and construction careers, hospitality services, and healthcare training. The VR modules allow students to explore jobs without pressure or judgment, providing them with a sense of confidence that carries over to other aspects of their lives.

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Our “Stars at Work” program is providing thousands of students across four major metro areas with creative and engaging ways to explore a variety of career options.

The VR simulations supplement a broader curriculum that focuses on soft skills and career readiness. Program leaders at participating sites give their students personalized guidance and help to arrange internships, field trips, and job placements with local and national employer partners.

The “Stars at Work” program was made possible by $2.45 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Labor Workforce Pathways for Youth program. After-School All-Stars is one of only five national organizations selected to receive the funding, allowing us to bring this program to 2,400 students over the next three years. The grant is awarded to organizations that are pursuing innovative strategies to provide young people with effective workforce readiness programs. Other grantees include Girl Scouts of the USA, Urban Alliance, and the YMCA.

Read the full press release here to learn more about this exciting partnership.

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We’re proud that Team All-Stars is made up of individuals from diverse backgrounds and experiences, and today we want to celebrate our AmeriCorps VISTA members, a special group of people who help to ensure our students get the experiences and opportunities they need to succeed.

AmeriCorps is the federal agency for national service and volunteerism, and VISTA is an acronym for “Volunteers in Service to America.” Members serve 1-year terms at organizations that help to make sustainable changes in areas that affect poverty, including education, public health, climate, access to benefits, and more.

The After-School All-Stars AmeriCorps VISTA program began in 2021 in Washington, D.C., and it’s now grown to 17 total members across 8 chapters and our national team. VISTAs serve in a wide range of roles, including volunteer management, research, event planning, fundraising, marketing, and programs. Melissa Lopez, our National VISTA Leader, ensures that this quickly growing team has someone to support and guide them throughout their service.

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We send a special thank you to all past and current AmeriCorps VISTA members at After-School All-Stars!

There are several open VISTA positions at ASAS, including our national office (Los Angeles) and the following chapters: Philadelphia & Camden, Puget Sound, and Washington, D.C. To view these opportunities and learn more, we invite you to visit our careers page.

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