Step into the spring semester!


Explore Pathways with CNA

On January 23rd, 25 teens from Ogden High School got to experience a career exploration field trip to CNA. On this trip teens got to meet team members across CNA’s multiple departments including HR, finance, marketing, underwriting and more! CNA is one of the United State’s largest commercial property and casualty insurance companies. The teens got to participate in networking activities to learn what it is like to work in the insurance industry.

Ogden High School Students at an Explore Pathways with CNA

Step Up Student Ambassador Highlight

Argo Senior & Teen Ambassador, Leann Musleh

School: Argo High School (Chicago)

Leann Musleh with her fellow

SU-Why did you decide to join Step Up?

LM-I honestly wanted to do something with my friends. It seems like the most fitting after school activity since it was all girls. Ms. Evoy, my PE teacher, also persuaded us to join.


SU-Which session of Step Up on Campus was your favorite? Why?

LM-I like the career topics, especially the ones that are realistic - like how much money, income, and education you need for certain jobs. I liked learning about real and relevant topics that can help me in the future.


SU- What area do you feel like you have grown the most through your participation in Step Up?

LM- I would say Step Up has helped me think more about my future and prioritize planning.


SU-How has Step Up impacted you or supported you in your future plans?

LM- It made my future a reality instead of a fantasy. When I think about school, college and a job hearing from speakers about their path has helped. It has been nice to find out that it's sometimes trial and error.


SU-What is your favorite thing about your fellow?

LM-I love how enthusiastic and positive Mrs. Kirchens is no matter what the situation. She supports all of our future plans and helps us begin them one by one. She also goes out of her way to give us fun trips and guest speakers.

We’re celebrating Women’s History Month in NYC! Join us March 6-7.

March 6: Power Talks presented by Kerastase from 5:00-7:00 p.m. is open to young women ages 18-29 and mentors ages 30+

March 7: Women’s Day – A Youth Mentoring Summit in partnership with NYC Service from 9:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. at the United Federation of Teachers is open to high school students and mentors ages 18+

Power Talks at Loyola Marymount University

PowerTalks Mentoring Moment
Power Talks Classroom

Step Up offered two Power Talks sessions at Loyola Marymount University during January. The first was part of Social Impact Career Week and focused on choosing a career aligned with our individual values. The second session focused on networking and provided students with the opportunity to connect with mentors from various industries and experiences. Through our Power Talks series, young women ages 18-29 have the chance to access flash mentorship via our digital community, along with hands-on workshops that offer a deep-dive into crucial career preparation areas.

Taking the Next Steps to Connect!

Do you have a favorite organization who reaches young women ages 18-29? Step Up would love to know them! Drop their name and a brief description here:

Step up Fellow Highlights

Name: Horlenes Flores (Or-le-niece)

High School: Alliance Tajima (Los Angeles)

Role at school: College & Career Specialist

Number of years at school: First Year!

Horlenes Flores Alliance Tajima Fellow

SU- Why do you think Step Up on Campus is a good fit for Alliance Tajima?

HF- I believe that introducing Step Up on Campus is a perfect fit for our students at Tajima. Given that we primarily serve first-generation students of color in a small charter school, creating a space like this is crucial. Our girls need to have a platform where they feel heard and have the opportunity to gain insights into real-world experiences. As a first-generation woman of color myself, I recall the challenges I faced in navigating different spaces and the sense of invisibility I felt when entering higher education. I am determined not to let our girls experience these same feelings. Providing them with the tools to understand the power of their voices early on, teaching them how to utilize it, and empowering them to own the spaces they inhabit 

SU- Why did you decide to become a fellow?

HF- I chose to become a fellow for Step Up based on my past involvement in college with a nonprofit organization called Mujeres Unidas. The missions of Mujeres Unidas closely align with many of the objectives that Step Up embraces. While our primary focus was empowering la mujer, we were also committed to addressing educational, social, and economic issues within our communities. The sense of community within Mujeres Unidas empowered me and connected me with many inspiring women. It taught me the transformative power of creating a space filled with support, passion, and resilience. It is this very message and dedication that I aim to impart to the younger generations by taking on the role of a fellow.

SU-How do you recruit students for the program?

HF-To recruit members for Step Up, I focus on engaging with teachers and counselors who recommend students they believe would benefit from the program. Through personalized conversations, I ensure the students are interested and would like to participate. Additionally, I utilize weekly meeting flyers distributed via advisory news, campus postings, and social media to increase program visibility. Leveraging word of mouth from current members has also proven effective, as their positive experiences serve as authentic endorsements, making the recruitment process more impactful.

SU- What are you most looking forward to as a fellow this semester?

HF-In the previous semester, as a first-time fellow and my first experience working at a high school, I learned valuable lessons during a significant transition. I accommodated students as they got to know me. Now, with a larger presence and established relationships with more students, I am enthusiastic about expanding the program and providing additional opportunities for our girls to participate in Step Up!

SU-Anything else you want to share with our school partners around the country?

HF-I extend my heartfelt gratitude to each of you for the impactful work you contribute across the nation! Your efforts and messages resonate deeply, and I want to emphasize the importance of the work we collectively undertake. It is not only significant but also a crucial factor in shaping the future. Thank you all for the unwavering support you provide to our girls!

Is there someone at your school who would like to receive these monthly updates from Step Up?

Contact the Director of Community Engagement, Maya Menon:

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