In 2016 the Office of Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention reported that 856,130 arrests were made in the United States of persons under the age of 18. You can probably guess some of the reasons because the issues that affect young people are in the news every day; poverty, gun violence, substance abuse, opioid overdoses, physical and sexual abuse of children, failing schools, and high drop-out rates. Too often families, schools, and other resources in the community are not enough to prevent a teenager from traveling down a destructive path.
It is often at this stage that the juvenile courts or social services agencies intervene. They assess and supervise, and sometimes decide that additional services or supports are necessary. Perhaps even an alternate setting is necessary to facilitate change. This sometimes means that an at-risk youth is referred for services offered by a private (non-governmental) provider. Such organizations serve as partners for the courts, juvenile probation departments, law enforcement, social service agencies, school districts, and families.
The lives of young people are important. They are quite literally our future. They are mostly people you have never met. But they are also your family members, neighbors, and young people you encounter each day. Unfortunately there are many challenges for adolescents in today’s society, and many of these children face obstacles from the earliest stages of life. Our business is to prevent kids from leading a life of crime and/or addiction. Not only is this possible, we see the positive results of our work every day. We see countless examples of these young people changing course, repairing relationships with their families and communities, and going on to college, tech school, the military, and many other productive pursuits.
Maybe you shouldn’t. It’s not for everyone. Teenagers are challenging to work with. We help young people with some of the most difficult problems you can imagine. This line of work requires a person to be both tough and compassionate. It can be stressful, requires a lot of work and professional growth, and will require you to step out of your comfort zone.
But, if you are looking for a challenge… If you want a career that literally makes a difference. If you like a fast pace, a work environment that requires teamwork and collaboration with others, and which demands high standards, then maybe it is for you. Some stay long enough to build skills and a resume for other fields like Education, Law Enforcement, or Social Services. Some find a niche that suits them and can’t imagine doing anything else.
The basic concept is that treatment, counseling, and/or education services are offered close to home, and the at-risk youth continues to live at home while participating in these services. This could be an anger management counseling session offered twice a week in an office setting, family counseling offered in the home, or alternative education services offered in lieu of a normal public school setting.
In this scenario, typically a youth services agency recommends out of home services to the court. A judge determines that the young person cannot remain at home or in the community. The youth is then referred to a residential treatment program where he or she will receive treatment, counseling, educational services and recreational programming in addition to housing, meals and medical services.
If you answered yes to any of the above and are interested in making a difference in the lives of youth, then Abraxas Youth & Family Services has opportunities for you!
The requirements for an internship with Abraxas may vary by school. As an example, State universities in Pennsylvania require students to complete an undergraduate internship application, attend a job interview with Abraxas, and secure an offer for a paid internship position.
Once hired, a paid intern will work 40 hours per week and be required to send weekly e-mail reports to his or her advisor. The intern will receive the same training all Abraxas employees receive. The intern will serve as a fully integrated member of the treatment team and will work with our youth and help guide them through daily program activities. Duties and responsibilities include role modeling appropriate behaviors and attitudes, facilitating group activities such as structured recreation, and providing mentorship and guidance to at-risk youth entrusted to our care.
Students may earn 3 to 13 credits for their internship based on need and coursework requirements. Upon completion of the internship, students will be required to complete a final internship paper. Additionally, the Abraxas internship supervisor will complete a performance review which will be sent to the student’s department advisor.
Interns will also participate in learning experiences outside the residential facility. They will engage with local and / or state police, which is where many of our youth make their initial contact with the juvenile justice system. We will introduce interns to county probation officers and case workers to provide perspectives on their roles and responsibilities. Interns will attend some courtroom proceedings to learn about the juvenile justice process. Finally, interns will visit select community based programs that Abraxas operates in order to provide a comprehensive overview of the entire juvenile justice system. This will help to expand the intern’s knowledge base and provide the necessary information to make an informed decision about future career aspirations.
Upon graduating many of our interns pursue full time employment with us.
Click on the career field below to see what paths are available for you at Abraxas
ALL ABRAXAS PROGRAMS ARE GUIDED BY OUR SEVEN KEY PRINCIPLES® OF CARE.
- People Security
- Program Security
- Accountability/Responsibility/High Expectations
- Role Modeling
- Dignity and Respect
- Cleanliness/Environment of Care
- Our staff empower young men and women to make positive changes in their behavior, their attitude, and their beliefs
- Our staff set the standards for behavior and model the behaviors they teach
- Abraxas operates 11 residential programs and 12 community based programs across six states
- Each program or facility employs a variety of positions from Direct Care to Support Services; we encourage employees to gain experience in different areas to find the right fit
- Most program and facility directors got their start with us in Direct Care and what started out as a job, became their career
- Medical & Prescription
- Flexible Spending Accounts
- Basic Life & Accidental Death & Dismemberment
- Short-Term & Long-Term Disability
- 401(k) Savings Plan
- Employee Stock Purchase Program
- Tuition Assistance Program
- Paid Time Off
- Nine Paid Holidays Per Year
- Employee Assistance Program
- College Partnerships
- Sign On Bonuses at select locations - Talk to a Recruiter for details
Follow the link below to view all current job openings at Abraxas.Search Openings