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LEAP Program

LEAP logo


LEAP identifies promising young people and prepares them for future workforce and civic success. The Milwaukee Police Department, LISC Milwaukee, and Earn and Learn have collaborated to strengthen communication between Milwaukee teens and police, prepare teens for future career success, and introduce Milwaukee companies to a diverse group of Milwaukee’s future workforce.

Through LEAP, area businesses help build work readiness skills and provide paid work experience opportunities for Milwaukee teens who are also enrolled in the STOP (Students Talking it Over with Police) program. Students will work at area businesses to learn first-hand how to apply the skills they’ve learned in school and through STOP to the workplace.


Participating companies employ teens, ages 17-20, 16 hours per week for eight weeks, June 24th through August 16th, Monday through Thursday. On Fridays, interns participate in the Milwaukee Police Department STOP Program. Companies contribute a flat rate of $2,250 for participation and interns are paid between $7.25 and $9.00 per hour.

2012 participating employers included Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, Educators Credit Union, First Stage Children's Theater, Harley-Davidson, KBS Construction, LISC, Marquette University, Northwestern Mutual, The PrivateBank, Roundy’s, Taylor Dynamometer , US Bank, and Wheaton Franciscan-St. Joseph.

Teen interns are selected from the northside neighborhoods of Harambee, Lindsay Heights, and Washington Park, and southside neighborhoods of Clarke Square and Layton Boulevard West. These are LISC’s five “Sustainable Communities”.

LEAP Partners

The Milwaukee Police Department STOP Program (Students Talking it Over with Police) (link) is designed to improve communication and build trust between police and teens. STOP was developed to educate young people on the nature of police work and explain the reasons that law-abiding citizens might find themselves interacting with police officers. Students who participate in STOP receive a photo ID, a T-shirt, and certificate of completion

LISC’s mission is to help transform distressed urban neighborhoods into healthy communities of choice and opportunity—great places to work, do business, and raise children. LISC will work with ManpowerGroup to provide payroll services and supervision for participating teens. An adult team leader will maintain regular contact with the youth and employers at all worksites. Teens will be recruited from the five central city neighborhoods where LISC focuses its development efforts.

Earn & Learn is the City of Milwaukee’s program to help young people make a successful transition from adolescence to adulthood by providing opportunities to develop work-readiness skills while they earn wages working in government, community- and faith-based organizations and private sector businesses. The Earn & Learn program will accept job orders from participating companies, help screen and match qualified students to fill positions, and provide support and technical assistance to participating companies.

LEAP Overview – PDF file

Frequently Asked Questions – PDF file

LEAP Program event launch on June 13, 2012

Marjorie Rucker
LISC Milwaukee Program Officer
414-273-1815 X 17