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Human Services & Recreation Department


    The Summer ROSE (Rewarding Opportunities in Summer Employment) Program is a locally funded initiative administered by the Department of Human Services and Recreation. During the summer it provides eligible Pasadena youth, ages 14 to 21, with enriching and constructive summer work experiences through placement in the public and private sectors.

    The Summer ROSE Program is designed to provide young people with the following opportunities:

    • Learn and practice responsibility, professionalism and other necessary work-related skills;
    • Experience a real workplace environment;
    • Interact with dynamic professionals in a positive work environment; and
    • Earn money while gaining meaningful work experience;

    Though it is a short-term employment and training program, the goal is to introduce Pasadena youth to employers who will positively impact their future by providing mentorship, resume building, work-related skill development, and exposure to various career industries.  


    Employers in Pasadena make this annual program possible by volunteering to serve as Host Employers and providing structured job opportunities for youth during the summer. For a small investment, Host Employers have the opportunity to make a positive and lasting impact on a youth worker’s life. Check out the inspirational video below and the testimonials that evidence how powerful and life changing these job opportunities can be.

    For more information on being a Host Employer, contact John Chacon at (626) 744-6530.



    My experience with the Summer ROSE program triggered my interest in higher education and got me thinking of a career path…It was a life changing opportunity. I gained useful skills and met people who pointed me in a good direction. It changed my perspective ... changed my life. 

    Yuriko Montes
    Recreation Leader, City of Pasadena – Human Services & Recreation

    Our experience with a Summer ROSE youth worker was extremely positive because the teen was motivated and highly responsible. We were fortunate because she completed her tasks on time and even expanded her scope of work by bringing us ideas on how the project could be improved. When she left the system that she was assigned to manage, it was significantly improved and will have a deeper positive impact than before on our constituents. 

    I believe by providing a professional atmosphere the teen benefitted in many ways, but the real contributing force was the fact that as a Host Employer, we gave her tasks that were complex and required her to follow through. We trusted her with a great deal of responsibility and she definitely rose to the occasion. If we had not provided such high expectations for her, her personal and professional growth would not have been so visible. 

    We definitely plan on hiring another Summer ROSE youth worker this year.  

    Brian Biery
    Director of Community Organizing, Flintridge Center

    The MASH Division of the Housing Department has been a longtime supporter and participant in the City’s Summer ROSE Program. Every year MASH has enjoyed mentoring and training a small group of Summer ROSE participants within our daily operations and has had as many as ten youth in one summer. As the MASH Program Coordinator, I think our program is a great opportunity for us to invest in the youth of Pasadena through the Summer ROSE Program and show them in a short period of time how their local government works. It also affords them the opportunity to explore the possibilities of future careers in the City and other government agencies.

    Each year that MASH has utilized the Summer ROSE Program, we have enjoyed building new relationships and work experiences with each of the youth that has participated. Some of the Summer ROSE participants go on to becoming MASH trainees in future recruitments. It is great for me, personally, to see a familiar face in a MASH interview.

    Our team cannot wait to work with the Summer ROSE youth this summer.

    Joe Padilla
    MASH Program Coordinator, City of Pasadena – Housing

    Jazmine came to Day One as a Summer ROSE worker during the Summer of 2008, when she was a15 year-old student at Blair High School. Following the Summer ROSE Program, Jazmine continued to volunteer with us, providing a joint opportunity for us to learn from her youth expertise while she received unconditional love and mentorship from a team of caring adults. Jazmine is currently in her 2nd year of college at UCLA and works at Day One as the Assistant to the Executive Director.

    There are many students like Jazmine that meet us through the ROSE Program and stay with us throughout their lives.

    Christy Zamani
    Executive Director, Day One

    I was at a crossroads in my life, as a young adult: uncertain about what I wanted to do, but yearning for a challenge. I saw the Summer ROSE Program as an opportunity for meaningful work exposure. Needless to say, almost 23 years later, that start has turned into a fulfilling career at the City, and I am indebted to Summer ROSE for opening that door for me.

    Dan Augustyn
    Management Analyst, City of Pasadena – Information Technology


    If you have additional questions about the Summer ROSE Program, please contact the Program Manager below: 

    John Chacon
    Villa-Parke Community Center
    363 E. Villa Street
    Pasadena, CA 91101

    Office Hours: Mon – Fri: 9:00am to 7:00pm, with alternating Fridays off
    (626) 744-6530 Phone
    (626) 744-6533 Fax

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