© 2020 by Columbia Urban League, Inc.



The Columbia Urban League’s Science Technology Enrichment Program (STEP) is a transition from the Summer Work Experience Leadership Program (SWELP), which was an evidence-based, best-practice career development program for primarily disadvantaged and underserved youth between the ages of 14 & 19. This summer, our main objective is to provide work experiences that include exposure to global technology and the Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) skills necessary to obtain and maintain gainful employment in the emerging global workforce. According to the Center for the Future of Work, emerging fields include data detection, information technology, ethical sourcing, artificial intelligence, computing, fitness, healthcare, finance, etc. Providing summer employment in these related career fields will provide our youth with the skills needed to compete in today’s workforce. These work experiences will inspire our youth to strive for academic success in STEM areas and prepare them for global career opportunities, enabling them to earn a livable income to become productive and contributing members of society.

In order to be eligible to participate in the program, interested youth must complete a STEP application. STEP applications will become available on April 1, 2019, online at www.culsc.org and at the Columbia Urban League office (1400 Barnwell Street, Columbia, SC 29201). The application requires personal information, prior work experience information, a personal reflection stating the applicant’s career interest and why he/she would like to work this summer, two letters of recommendation and a photocopy of formal identification. All applications must be completed and mailed to the Columbia Urban League by May 30th, 2019, attn.: STEP (P.O. Box 50125, Columbia, SC 29250)


  • Participants must participate in job skills training/orientation prior to work site placement.

  • ​Parents are required to attend orientation sessions.

  • Placements usually last for two to four weeks.

  • Participants work twenty hours per week.

  • Participants must write an essay on their work experience and lessons learned.

  • Participants earn a $250 stipend upon completion of a two-week work assignment and receipt of required documentation.



  • To provide career shadowing to introduce participants to real-life work experience.

  • To mentor participants to increase their knowledge of business etiquette and work ethics.

  • To offer structured environments to help build participants’ self-esteem.

  • To encourage networking opportunities for exposure of different careers fields.

If accepted to participate in the program, the student and his/her parent (guardian) must attend a mandatory job skills training/orientation prior to receiving their job site assignment. After successful completion of two 20-hour workweeks, the participant will receive a $250.00 stipend and a certificate of completion. The program will begin on June 10, 2019 and will conclude on August 2, 2019. 

​Although it is our desire to serve all eligible applicants, the number is students served by this program is contingent upon the amount of funding we receive. For more information or questions regarding the Columbia Urban League's Science Technology Enrichment Program (STEP), please contact STEP STAFF: (803) 929-1033.