The Bluff Country Collaborative (BCC) has received a national grant to start an Ambassador program that pairs high school youth with 15 mentors in career and technical fields to help youth see themselves in local high-demand careers that align to their interests.  

In partnership with Community and Economic Development Associates (CEDA), Houston Economic Development Authority (EDA), Fillmore County EDA, Southeast Service Cooperative (SSC), Workforce Development Inc. (WDI), and the State of Minnesota, the Ambassador program helps employers develop and build a strong talent pipeline and supports youth to build a professional network while developing career goals and plans.  

“We are working to develop a pool of professional “Ambassadors” who are willing and able to share their story with high school students and their parents.” Says MaryAnne Smith, Career Navigator at Southeast Service Cooperative. 

Mentors will commit 20 to 30 hours during the school year to work with marginalized youth. Stipends are also available. 

If you or your company wish to serve as a mentor or provide other hands-on learning experiences to middle or high school youth, contact MaryAnne Smith at msmith@ssc.coop or Allison Wagner at EDA@co.houston.mn.us  for more information.  

For more information on the Bluff Country Collaborative visit

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