Teen Independence Program (TIP)

Teen Independence Program (TIP)

TRUE Relationships Unearth Excellence

TRUE Mentors’ Independence Program* is a school year-long college and career readiness program for teenagers in Hoboken. Each teen hired will be given training and paired with a mentor to work on a project in partnership with a local business. Teens are required to work 4 hours per week on the project at a local business. In partnership with local businesses, teens have worked on projects such as Marketing, Product Development, Business Planning, and Event Planning. Teens and mentors meet weekly on Thursday afternoons from 3-4 pm to work on the project and participate in college and career workshops. In addition to the internship, teens are offered college and career readiness workshops, one on one help with college applications, help finding a job, visits to local colleges, and life skills training. The Internship program is open to 9-12 graders in high school.

Post-internship, teens are offered college and career readiness workshops, one on one help with college applications, help finding a job, visits to local colleges, and life skills training.

*On-going enrollment for this program


Parents / Teens:

Enroll Student


Interested in Volunteering?

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True Mentors || Michael – Teen Intern from Austin Abbott on Vimeo.

Benefits to the teen interns

  • Encouragement for faster learning and growth—both personal and professional

  • Increased confidence in their skills and abilities

  • Access to role models

  • One on one college planning instruction

  • Critical job skills (interviewing, time management, resume writing, etc.)

  • Increased communication skills

Benefits to the mentors

  • Satisfaction of helping a youth achieve in college goals & their career

  • A chance to share your professional skills through weekly meetings with your mentee

  • Opportunity to change a young person’s life

  • Improved communication and people skills

  • Recognition

Our Volunteers


Sammie Stills – Senior Workshop Coordinator (2018-2019)

Sammie Still graduated from University of Maryland, College Park in 2015 with a degree in Family Science and Sociology and is currently pursuing a Masters of Professional Studies from Pennsylvania State University. Although she was born and raised in Maryland, she was excited to join the Hoboken community in January of 2018 after relocating from Washington, D.C. Sammie is currently employed with a large management consulting firm as a human resources generalist and has a professional background focused in campus recruiting. She has experience mentoring high school aged girls through campus programming and D.C. based non-profits.



Our Partners


Featured Business – Hoboken Grace

Anthony was amazed at how much can get done with help from those who are passionate about a cause.”Being thAnthony Hoboken Graceat Hoboken is an-open minded and collaborative community it was helpful to have Amanda on board for special events.  Amanda was not only helpful but she was insightful as well. She brought a young and fresh perspective to a position that could really use it, ” said Reimer. “The relationship was mutually beneficial.” At the end of the internship both Amanda and Anthony learned a lot about teamwork and training. Teen internships are a great way for a spirited learner to get their feet wet in their interests and gain confidence in their skills before entering the workforce. Anthony says, “your intern is there to help as much as they are there to learn, so be prepared to go the extra mile and don’t just give them a task, help them to understand the “why” and be willing and open to answer and field questions about the projects at hand. We ended up having a lot of fun with Amanda and I think in the end it was because she knew she could feel comfortable around us to learn and explore a new position.”

Featured Business – Ben and Jerry’s

Sibel PhotoThe Ben and Jerry’s internship project this year was focused on promotion and advertising. The goal of the internship was to create different ways to gain the attention of the public, to bring awareness on what is the difference between Ben & Jerry’s and other places, and to inspire them to stop by for a sweet treat after a long day at school or work. “It’s brought more people into the shop, increasing our afternoon line, and it’s helped Kayla gain the knowledge of what we do is not just mere scooping at a regular ice-cream shop. We believe local businesses should foster an environment and offer work experience to help students grow and reach their full potential. We are a values led company that happens to make the best ice cream out there. Our job consist of making a difference in the community and environment, putting smiles on everyone one scoop at a time.”




Mentor – Kristin Sharp
unnamedI enjoyed being a friend to my Mentee, being available when she had questions, and hearing about her success. Some of the challenges we faced together included working around and adjusting schedules. I tried to provide her with a study system to help her improve her grades. Her grades were not good and she did not have a study system. It was rewarding to see Rayza apply herself and as a result, she received an A on her test! It was a very fulfilling experience, for both of us. It is an amazing experience when they model you, put things into action and do things we specifically spoke about.
Mentee – Rayza
rayzaThe program really helped me with time management and preparing for college. I also enjoyed working for Fleet Feet. I am very athletic and play softball, so I really enjoyed working with athletic clothing and equipment. The workshops taught me how to maintain eye contact during presentations and avoid saying the word “umm.” The program also helped me not to be nervous and I was able to join prep classes for the SAT’s and Math. I was enrolled into the IEP program in 7th grade. As a result of this internship, I was able to get out of the program. I also gained work experience at my first job which helped me prepare for the future.