Restaurant volunteers took over high school classrooms across California on October 22. Restaurants teamed up with the California Restaurant Foundation to help Gen Z students prepare for their first jobs – everything from resume-writing to practical interview skills. This one-day classroom takeover, called called Force In Training® (FIT), was hosted in 50 high schools across the state, training nearly 3,500 students on a single day.  


Restaurant volunteers led the three-hour FIT training at each high school. Students learned how to write a resume, interview, read a paycheck, move up in a career, and more. Restaurant industry volunteers brought the lessons to life with real-world examples and experience.  


Restaurants have a major role to play in youth employment. Nearly one in three people got their start in restaurants. First jobs are also critical to fostering soft skills like teamwork, customer service, and responsibility – skills that may not be as intuitive for Gen Z digital natives. CRAF is providing youth the skills, certifications and resources they need to land that all-important first job. 


“What an amazing opportunity to have employers from the local community teaching young people how to land their first job,” said Alycia Harshfield, Executive Director of CRAF. “For 75% of the students we serve, this is the only job-readiness course they receive in high school. We are so grateful to our sponsors and volunteers for taking the time to invest in our students.”

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