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Governor and First Lady Parson Promote State Participation in Jobs for America's Graduates

(JEFFERSON CITY, MO) – On Wednesday, Governor Mike Parson and First Lady Teresa Parson addressed the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission to promote Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) and commend the Missouri Department of Transportation’s (MoDOT) recent involvement in the program.

“We have consistently maintained that these students are a critical piece to Missouri’s future,” Governor Parson and First Lady Parson said. “The JAG program assists Missourians by providing resources that help ensure students can pursue a meaningful educational experience, career, and life.  As co-chairs of its board of directors, we are committed to growing JAG’s footprint in Missouri to benefit more Missouri youth.”

This past year, MoDOT started working in conjunction with JAG across Missouri to present and engage students about future career choices the department has to offer. To date, MoDOT engineers and maintenance staff have conducted or scheduled team building exercises, such as bridge building competitions, at more than 30 Missouri schools.

“This program gives us a chance to directly impact the next generation in our workforce and encourage them to use their own unique strengths in the classroom, future employment, and in life,” Lester Woods, MoDOT Chief Administrative Officer said. “With the ongoing workforce challenges across the nation, this is a great opportunity for MoDOT to invest in and attract young talent from across our state.”

Founded in 1979, JAG helps students who have shown academic potential but are also impacted by significant barriers such as poverty and personal trauma. The program works with these students to build towards focused career paths using trade or technical skillsets, as well as college-degree job opportunities.

JAG-Missouri has grown from six programs in six schools serving 225 students in 2014 to more than 80 programs serving more than 3,200 students today. 

JAG has seen nearly a 96 percent graduation rate from its involved schools compared to an 85 percent graduation rate among high school seniors nationally. Those graduates have nearly an 80 percent rate of full-time job placement or post-secondary education after high school.

For more information about JAG, visit:

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