By Mike Schuh

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City leaders know that getting kids summer jobs will help them have a better chance for college or a career.

The city’s summer Youthworks program helps place students with local businesses.

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DeArra Crews-Harris is an intern at Shock Trauma where on Monday she was learning how to set up the simulated resuscitation room.

The University of Maryland Medical Center pays 70 student like DeArra to be here as a part of the mayor’s Youthworks program.

At 17, DeArra knows she wants to be an OBGYN.

“Because I delivered my own baby,” she said.

At that moment her life changed and she realized she needed to listen and learn from the 911 operator.

“Because I listened to someone,” DeArra said. “Before I wouldn’t listen to anyone. I was always thinking that I was always right.”

Her change in attitude has led her to this opportunity, impressing her supervisor and leading to more responsibilities

“One of the big skills they learn is a lot of coming into a professional environment and interacting at that level,” said Holly Sowko, a nursing manager.

Samuel Burris knows the feeling.

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“I love my job, I absolutely love my job,” Burris said.

Seventeen years ago, he was a Youthworks intern and he’s now a manager at the hospital.o

The program “[helped] create the work ethic I now have, so I credit all the opportunities I now have to Youthworks.”

DeArra will continue her training through the 5-week program but she said it’s already changed her.

“I used to be really loud,” DeArra said, “and since I’ve been here, they’ve been teaching me etiquette and how to talk to someone professionally.”

DeArra plans to go to college before medical school.

Youthworks places more than 8,000 young people, ages 14-21, into five-week summer positions.

All of the students are paid Maryland’s new minimum wage — $10.10 an hour.

For more information about YouthWorks and to learn how you can be involved, please click here.

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