PEORIA (WEEK) -- A small but mighty group of Peoria Public School students are being recognized by city leaders and staff.
13 students participated in the annual youth program working with city staff and city leaders. They celebrated all of their hard work and contributions to the city as ambassadors of the Peoria public school system.
City workers who supervised the students are feeling confident about their future success.
"It's building character," said the Mayor of Peoria Rita Ali. "It's actually grooming our future work force, so investing in youth early, and I've been involved in this type of work for a long time, it pays off in the future."
"We're really excited because we know the students that are leaving the program are in a much better place then when they started," said Communication Specialist for the City of Peoria Alex Williams. "They know about future career opportunities, they've got work experience under their belt, but then also they have a brighter start to their school year as well."
This program also had an impact on the students involved, with their contributions to the city and personal growth becoming a memory they can always be proud of.
"It makes me feel like I did something for the city, because when I walk down or drive past I know I did that," said youth member Darius Graves.
"Before this program I wasn't that good with working with others, and now that I have been in this program I'm a lot better at it," said youth member Jaydon Roberts.
This program allowed juniors, seniors and even recent high school graduates to get acquainted with different types of work.
The Mayor plans to have more youth programs set in the future. You can visit peoriagov.org and search "Mayor's Youth program" for more information on how to register next year.