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ComEd, Partners Announce Expanded Summer Job Training for Teens Interested in the Trades

ComEd’s CONSTRUCT Youth Academy returns for the second year with expanded programming at Chicagoland YMCA of Metro Chicago and Goodwill sites

ComEd today joined workforce partners the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago and Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin and Metropolitan Chicago in announcing the return of the CONSTRUCT Infrastructure Youth Academy, a paid summer career exposure program for high school students interested in careers in the construction and energy fields. Just in time for youth making their summer plans, the CONSTRUCT Youth Academy is back for its second year, with new locations added across the Chicagoland area, and classes set to begin in both June and July. Interested students are encouraged to apply through YMCA or Goodwill now through May 31.

The program is one example of how ComEd is growing opportunities for local youth and residents to prepare for roles in the fast-growing clean energy sector in Illinois. A recently commissioned study by ComEd, reveals that as many as 150,000 clean energy jobs will arrive in Illinois by 2050.

"ComEd is committed to expanding career pathways for youth across northern Illinois as we work to create a talent pipeline that is needed for the transition to a clean energy future,” said David Perez, executive vice president and COO of ComEd. “In partnership with the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago and Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin and Metropolitan Chicago, the CONSTRUCT Youth Academy is growing to reach more youth in more communities with a chance to prepare for fast-growing careers in our field, giving them a chance to play a role in building a stronger future for their community, while earning a good paying wage.”

The CONSTRUCT Youth Academy program caters to area teens interested in learning about the wide range of careers in energy, from entry-level craft positions to roles in STEM, engineering and more. New to the curriculum this year, students will participate in a community service project building dressers for underserved communities using construction skills learned in the program. Students will also get out into the field to study key equipment used to oversee and maintain the grid as part of drone-flying demos; and will meet with company leaders to learn more about ComEd’s vehicle fleet and how it is transitioning to EVs.

ComEd is teaming up with the YMCA of Metro Chicago and Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin and Metro Chicago to recruit and conduct interviews for students interested in the program. Once enrolled, students will attend classroom sessions three times a week held across YMCA’s locations in Woodlawn, West Humboldt Park, Little Village and Palatine, and at Goodwill’s Workforce Connection Center in Englewood.

"As a core component of the Y's growing portfolio of programs in the workforce space, the CONSTRUCT Youth Academy provides our local teens with a behind-the-scenes look at jobs they might never have considered, while also empowering them to develop new, practical, and transferable professional and life skills," said Martina "Tina" Hone, chief economic inclusion & equity officer, YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago. "We know that introducing young people to the tremendous possibilities in these careers is a key step in setting them up for long-term success. The Y is proud to partner with ComEd again this year to expand the program, which — based on last year's astounding demand — points to young people’s rising interest in careers in energy and the trades!"

The program returns after high levels of interest from local youth, with hundreds of applications received last year. As part of an effort to expand the CONSTRUCT Youth Academy program from one to five sites this year, Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin and Metropolitan Chicago joins as a new workforce partner assisting with recruitment and training with local youth.

“Goodwill is thrilled to support this up-and-coming program that will expand our reach to local youth in helping them identify well-paying and fulfilling careers to pursue,” said Clayton Pryor, chief mission officer, Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin and Metropolitan Chicago. “Through this program, we are using our expertise as a leading workforce development provider to provide quality job readiness training, skill building and supportive services to teens and young adults to reach them earlier in their life journey and improve outcomes for sustained employment, career advancement and independence.”

To be eligible for the program, applicants must be a rising high school junior or senior. The program will have two cohorts, the first beginning June 10, the second beginning July 8, and students will receive a stipend upon completion of the program. Both the YMCA and Goodwill will provide CTA passes for participants traveling to the classroom sessions. Those interested in applying for the program through the YMCA can learn more details and apply here. Those interested in joining through Goodwill can submit their application here.

The CONSTRUCT Youth Academy builds on the success of the CONSTRUCT Infrastructure Academy, ComEd’s premiere workforce development program which has successfully trained more than 800 residents for trades roles in the construction and energy fields. The CONSTRUCT programs are among a variety of workforce offerings through ComEd and its partner agencies, which in 2023 collectively helped reach more than 2,000 local residents. For more on ComEd career readiness programs, please visit

About ComEd

ComEd is a unit of Chicago-based Exelon Corporation (NASDAQ: EXC), a Fortune 250 energy company with approximately 10 million electricity and natural gas customers – the largest number of customers in the U.S. ComEd powers the lives of more than 4 million customers across northern Illinois, or 70 percent of the state’s population. For more information visit, and connect with the company on Facebook, X, Instagram and YouTube.

About the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago

The YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago is the leader in accessible, inclusive programming for more than 300,000 individuals each year, strengthening community by connecting all people to their purpose, potential, and each other. The YMCA of Metro Chicago is evolving to become a 21st-century social enterprise for the region, through an association of 14 community hubs, 5 overnight camps, and 100 extension sites throughout Chicagoland and the Midwest. Learn more about the Y's locations and programming at

About Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin and Metropolitan Chicago

Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin and Metropolitan Chicago is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that provides people with opportunities and support to empower themselves and thrive through training, development and employment. As the largest among a network of more than 150 Goodwill organizations in North America, the organization serves a 23-county territory across two states – Wisconsin and Illinois.

Our Goodwill region employs more than 5,000 employees who help us meet the needs of more than 50,000 people across our territories. For more than 100 years, since 1919, we’ve employed job seekers, supported our communities, and provided an exceptional experience for our shoppers and donors in support of our mission: Connecting people to work. Preparing people for life.

For more information or to find a Goodwill near you, visit Find us on Facebook (, YouTube (@GoodwillSEWMC), and X and Instagram (@AmazingGoodwill).


ComEd Media Relations


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