BALTIMORE (WJZ) — One of Baltimore’s biggest football stars is urging kids to get to work.

Jessica Kartalija reports it’s part of a city campaign to get kids off the streets and into the workforce.

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Ravens running back Ray Rice is used to working hard on the field, but the star football player says he learned the importance of work when he was just 13.

“I always trace it back to my first job.  There was nothing like giving my mom a little bit of my paycheck,” Rice said.

Now Rice is teaming up with Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake to promote the city’s YouthWorks summer job campaign.

“I started sweeping up hair, working at catering halls.  I worked at a hospital.  I did it all with my summer jobs,” he said.

YouthWorks matches teens and young adults with local employers for six weeks over the summer.

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“It’s essential that we work together to help young people learn these important job skills,” Rawlings-Blake said.

Tyrone Turner spent last summer at the ER Radiology department at Sinai Hospital.

“Working in the hospital gave me an opportunity to see what goes on from the doctors’ and technicians’ point of view,” Turner said.

The mayor says teaching students the importance of hard work will help improve Baltimore’s economy in the future.

“They are setting themselves up for the skills they are going to need for life.  It’s important, even in these tough times, to give kids opportunities.  It’s important our kids in Baltimore stay competitive and that’s why YouthWorks matters,” Rawlings-Blake said.

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The YouthWorks summer job program starts June 27 and is open to students ages 14-21. For more information, click here. To participate in the raffle, click here.