The Martha's Vineyard Youth Leadership Initiative's  

3rd Annual Job Shadow Day

Sivana & Elizabeth
Sivana and Elizabeth
Jacob Lawrence
Isabelle & Alecia
Isabelle and Alecia
Mary Ollen & Elizabeth Warren
Lucy Norris
Lucy Norris
Lucas Amirans
Lucas Amirans
Willoe and Randi
Willoe and Randi
Julia & John
Julia and John
James Roddy
James Roddy
Liz Witham, Shavanae Anderson
Beka El-Deiry
Beka El-Deiry, Parent
Zachary Frangos
Zachary Frangos
Elizabeth Rothwell
Charlie Pikor
Mary Ollen

MV Savings Bank

Permanent Endowment of MV
Beka, Saundra & Patti Leighton
Beka, Saundra, Patti Leighton
The Martha's Vineyard Youth Leadership Initiative hosted its

3rd Annual Job Shadow Day. This year MVYLI youth aspire to become an event planner, international marketing, college professor, software writer, business manager, a photographer, physical therapist and sign language specialist, public relations-communications director, international affairs, politician, and CSI forensic specialist and a translator at the United Nations.


Sivana Brown was matched with Elizabeth Rothwell, Marketing and Events Director at The Harborview Hotel. Sivana assisted with The Scottish Society's annual event - men in kilts and all.  She also helped with Job Shadow Day Reception hosted by the Harbor View Hotel.  "I had a lot of fun and I learned a lot," Sivana told Elizabeth. "Meeting with you made me 100% sure that Event Planning is what I want to do." 


Jacob was the MC at this year's Reception where youth and their mentors shared their personal experiences. Last year, Jacob Lawrence shadowed Brian Bilsback at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).  When he served as Master of Ceremonies for MVYLI's Multicultural Assembly at MVRHS, he decided to explore the world of public relations.  This year, Jacob shadowed Senator John Kerry's Communications Director, Nicole Caravella who has worked in both the public and private sectors."MVYLI will point you in the right direction," Jacob says. "But it's your job to get to the next level. Even if you're on the right path you might just get run over if you don't keep moving forward."   


Isabelle Wadleigh had a life-changing experience with Alecia Barnes, Martha's Vineyard Coordinator, Certified Early Intervention Specialist. "Isabelle was able to see a child who utilizes sign language to communicate in her school and home environment,"
says Alecia. "She connected with the family and the child in such beautiful way as to leave a lasting impression.  They were all hugging at the end of the session and wishing each other good luck in all future endeavors."


Thank you for asking me to participate in this wonderful community program. I am always impressed with how this Island brings people together from all different backgrounds for one common cause. What better cause than to help build a solid foundation for our youth to be able to build a better future for all of us! I love it! Alecia Barnes


There were several high-powered matches in Boston. Last summer

Mary Ollen volunteered at a Vineyard Haven event in honor of Elizabeth Warren.  Being matched with Senator Warren's brand new Office Manager was a dream come true.  Mary "hopes to one day to be a senator and who knows, maybe even the president of the United States! Job Shadow Day helped me confirm that working in politics is what I want to do with my life. I am so grateful!


Isabelle El-Deiry with
Jacob Lawrence and Mary Ollen

Isabella El-Deiry built upon last year's match with Rose Styron to be with Senator Kerry's offices who chaired the Foreign Affairs Committee. Now that Senator Kerry is Secretary of State, she will explore an internship while attending college in Washington D.C.


At the 2012 MVYLI Youth Leadership Summit, Lucy Norris decided she wanted to pursue an international career.  For Job Shadow Day she was matched with the Consul General of Spain in Boston. "For over thirty years he's been a Consul General for Spain in eight countries: Algeria, Morocco, Argentina, Spain, France, U.S and others," says Lucy. "MVYLI has helped me turn my interests into career explorations and making connections for my future."


When Lucas Amirans expressed an interest in marketing, MVYLI reached out to the community for great ideas. Dreamland's Kitty Salvage suggested MV Museum's Marketing Director Katy Fuller (she had an event that night) and Phil DaRosa (also had event). Kat McCourt recommended award winning JB Blau (off-island that day).  Given Lucas outgoing personality and performances with the Minnesingers and the MVRHS's annual musical, the perfect match was finally found: Martha's Vineyard Film Society's Richard Paradise.  


Regardless of whatever career path you take, always embrace those side paths. MVYLI provides the practical career experience that every student needs. It was lots of fun - sign me up for next year. Richard Paradise

Randi Baird Photography mentored Willoe Maynard, showing her the ropes of her small business run out of her home.  The next day, Willoe joined Randi a real photo shoot. "MVYLI's Job Shadow Day was an amazing experience and it has really opened my eyes to different possibilities for my future," says Willoe.

Lilly Neville
Lilly Neville
Before she left for a semester in Spain, 
Lilly Neville was matched with Detective Michael Snowden, Edgartown Police Department. "It was a real eye opener for me," says Lilly. "Before MVYLI I couldn't even wrap my head around the idea of colleges and what I wanted for my future. Now things are starting to clear up and I'm figuring out what I really love and want to pursue as a career (involving the Spanish language and travel)." 


 Last year, Julia Cooper was curious about the world of sustainable architecture.  Matched with Ryan Bushey at the South Mountain Company, Julia was fascinated with this hands-on experience. This one afternoon helped her to see what she really wanted was a more people-oriented career.  This year, Julia is exploring the life of a college professor with John Kennedy from LaSalle University of Philadelphia who taught in Prague (Czech Republic). "MVYLI's Job Shadow Day has allowed me to really visualize my future," says Julia. "It has allowed me to discover all of the directions I could take my future and helped me to get on track with a potential career."


MVYLI organized its first virtual Job Shadow Day experience with software writer Ellen Leverenz dazzling aspiring James Roddy with an online tour of the Apache Software Foundation.  Since Ellen is in Palo Alto working on this project, in the spring, she will meet James in person when she visits her home in Menemsha.


Thanks for setting this up -- we had a good talk, covered a lot of ground, and I introduced James to my favorite recruiter who loves to help people become tech writers. James is awesome. I made a new friend. Ellen Leverenz

Liz Witham, Film-Truth Productions first met Shavanae Anderson at the 2011 MV International Film Festival where both of their videos were featured. Since she aspires to become a pediatrician, Shav has shadowed doctors at the Martha's Vineyard Hospital for the last two years. Her experience as MVYLI's intern at MVTV and then an accomplished video producer inspired her to minor in communications at college next year. Shav joined Liz' company, shooting a video of Edgartown. At the end of the day, Shav was even offered a job!


Special guests included Anne Floyd and her husband. MVYLI Parents attended the reception including Carla Cooper, Evet Hall, Kim Lawrence, Kimberly Morris-Wadleigh and Beka El-Deiry who shared how her daughter Bella has blossomed with MVYLI. 


What a lovely way to honor both the students and their mentors. It's inspiring to see so many young faces with such ambition. And a very big "thank you" to all of the volunteers, supporters and hosts of this event. Carla Cooper


It was so great to see such enthusiasm and joy from both the mentors and the mentees at the job shadow day reception. I would say it looked. to be a very welcome experience for everyone involved. Jessica Roddy


For some, this one-day becomes a valuable mentor.
Charlie Pikor is interested in combining his interests in business management and technology. He was excited to spend an afternoon with seasonal resident John Klein, CEO Polarex. Charlie was most impressed with John's words of wisdom. "He shared how he had worked hard for many years, especially when he was young," says Charlie. John gave him 8 Habits Remarkably Successful People Do.

Charlie and John
Charlie and John


Charlie presented a sponsor recognition certificate to Zachary Frangos, General Manager of the Harbor View Hotel
who spoke of the importance of MVYLI's Job Shadow Day. "The students took the ceremony quite seriously. They were all so professionally dressed and very articulate when speaking about their experience," said Elizabeth Rothwell.

Each February, the National Groundhog Job Shadow Day, a national campaign gives youth a new perspective on their studies with hands-on learning and one-day mentoring experience. Vineyard youth are matched with companies and professionals to have first-hand experience about careers in their fields of interest. 


For the last few months students have been preparing for Job Shadow Day. It all begins in June at the MVYLI Youth Leadership Summit with three questions: What is my dream for my life, my Island and the world? During MVYLI's year-round program, youth then research possible careers, visit colleges and explore their options. During the weekly work sessions, they interview each other and write short bios to give to their mentors. They develop interview questions to guide their Job Shadow Day sessions. Questions like: What did you study in college? What was your first job in this career?What is the day-in-the-life of a ____? What is most enjoyable or challenging?

"It is wonderful to see the sparks ignite in each MVYLI youth member as they talk about going to college and their future careers!" says MVYLI's Project Coordinator, Saundra Hart Johnson. "I am continually amazed at the determination of each student and the ability of these youth to support each other through every task. We've got a really great group!"

"The MVYLI youth are so passionate and clearly feel empowered through their involvement with our programs," says Anna Luckey, MVYLI's Development Director. "It is inspiring to be around them and encouraging to know they will be our future leaders!"   


"We are exposing their young minds to inspiring leaders, opening doors and expanding their horizons," says
Marianne Larned, MVYLI's Executive Director. "We invite people to join with us in investing in these young people to become leaders of a sustainable world."


Upcoming Events

Youth Leadership Summit for Sustainable Development: June 22-28

Nomination & Orientation: April 24

Walter Cronkite Awards Ceremony: August 8



MV Regional High School students test-drive careers 

MV Times, February 7, 2013
Martha's Vineyard Youth Leader Initiative Shadow Day 2013
MV Patch, January 30, 2013 
Job Shadow Day
Vineyard Gazette, February 14, 2013 


MVYLI's 3rd Annual Job Shadow Day Sponsors

David and Karen Brush

Peter DeLisle
Dickinson Family Foundation 

Hermann Foundation

Mr. and Mrs. Michael Horowitz

Martha's Vineyard Savings Bank

Permanent Endowment of Martha's Vineyard

The Riverbend Fund 


It is heartening to see the growth from year to year of the students involved in this program. The promise flourishing in each of the students that we encountered last year to this year is a testament to the efforts of everyone involved: organizers, mentors, and supporters. It is definitely a team effort like a well-played championship tournament.   

                         Patti Leighton, Martha's Vineyard Savings Bank

Providing funding in support of MVYLI and the Job Shadow Day is a tangible way to demonstrate our commitment to our community and our future leader.

            Paul Falvey, President, Martha's Vineyard Savings Bank


Martha's Vineyard Youth Leadership Initiative is a project of the Stone Soup Leadership Institute, a 501c3 non profit organization founded on Martha's Vineyard in 1997.  Federal ID # 31-159-4004.