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History/Purpose of YMTF

During the 1960’s when minorities were still feeling the pinch of segregation and had limited access to non-traditional jobs, the National Alliance of Business was created. This organization was established in 1968 under the influence of the late President Lyndon B. Johnson. The National Alliance of Business had two major components—the College/Industry Cluster Program and the Youth Motivation Task Force Program. The latter, commonly referred to as YMTF, was geared toward motivating minority students to excel to the best of their abilities and to encourage them to look at career options other than teaching and general liberal arts. Today, the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) students are exposed to different careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), Business and other professional industries. Therefore, the program is now focused on helping students make a successful transition from college to the real world of work.

The program has expanded to include classroom visitations, career development workshops, remote radio broadcasts, local high school visits and assembly programs. Students are exposed to nationally known speakers that have included Valeisha Butterfield-Jones, Angela Davis, Michael Eric Dyson, Kirk Franklin, Judge Glenda Hatchett, MC Lyte, Bakari Sellers, Al Sharpton, Stephen A. Smith and many more. A luncheon is held with the keynote speaker to allow student liaisons and program participates the opportunity to dialogue in a more intimate setting. YMTF touches the lives of thousands of college and high school students each year. Surveys from students, consultants, faculty and staff named YMTF as the premier program offered through the Office of Career Services.

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YMTF Planning Committee

Nyerere Billups, Director, R&D Program Management Operations, AbbVie Inc.

Earl Kevin Blakely, Area Manager, AT&T

*Andrzej Bloomfield, OTR Site Leader, Amazon 

*VeLois Bowers, Principal Consultant, VHB Diversity and Inclusion Consultants

*Kameshia Freeman, Senior Vice President, JLL-Jones Land LaSalle 

*Marques Gardner, District Manager of Sales and Operations, Murphy USA

Kimel U Hodges, EDI Program Director, Memorial Hermann Health Systems

*Dr. Ruth Jones, Associate Manager, NASA Marshall Space Flight Center

*Felicia Kennedy, Founder/CEO, FL Kennedy Group

*Alvin F. Peer, State Outreach Coordinator, USDA-NRCS

*Rickey Peer, Retired, U.S. Army-Munitions Command

Veronica Sabatier, Senior Integrator Commercial Crew Program, National Aeronautics and Space Administration

*Ledora Stribling, Assistant Vice President/U.S. Campus Recruitment Manager, Genpact LLC

*Bobbye J. Sweat, Director, Diversity & Inclusion, First Command Financial Services

* Denotes University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff Graduates

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The cost of this program is solely funded by corporations and government agencies who recruit UAPB students. Through the years, the YMTF annual budget has grown from $500 to more than $30,000.  This increase is due to the cost of nationally known speakers, increase in consultant and student participation, and inflation.

Corporate Sponsorship

For your contribution, you will be recognized as a sponsor that is investing in UAPB students and developing a talent pipeline for future leaders.  In addition you will receive an opportunity to:

  • Brand your logo in our official program booklet and conference website.
  • Increase your reach and exposure to top students
  • Interview and hire top students for Cooperative Education, summer internships or permanent placements.
  • Diversify your workforce
  • Receive advertisement on UAPB TV/Radio and the Pine Bluff Commercial.
  • Invite participants as consultants from your organization.
  • Serve on a panel or conduct a workshop.

Corporate Sponsorship Levels

Platinum $7,500 to $10,000
Gold $5,000  to  $7,499
Silver $2,500  to  $4,999
Bronze $1,000  to  $2,499

Individual Sponsorship

In order for the program to continue at the level that it has in the past, we are extending the opportunity for consultants, University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB)/AM&N Alumni and friends to make a contribution.  Your contribution will help the Office of Career Services continue to develop UAPB students to meet the demands of today’s employers.  YMTF provides an opportunity for students to enhance their work ethics, networking, communication, interpersonal, and leadership skills. 

Individual sponsors will be recognized in our official program booklet and conference website. The levels are:

Sapphire $25-$100
Ruby $101-$200
Diamond $201-$500
Golden Lion $501+

To make a donation, go to UAPB Shopping Cart or Make a check, money order or purchase order payable to YMTF Career Services

Mail check or money order to:

University of Arkansas Pine Bluff
Office of Career Services
1200 N. University Drive, Mail Slot 4975
Pine Bluff, AR 71601

Your contribution is tax deductible.

Company Match

If your company will match your contribution, please take advantage of this benefit.  You will need to:

  • Obtain the company match form from your employer
  • Make check payable to UAPB Foundation Fund
  • Indicate on the check memo: Career Services Account
  • Mail check or money order to:

University of Arkansas Pine Bluff

Office of Career Services

1200 N. University Drive

Mail Slot 4975

Pine Bluff, AR 71601

Matched funds will be automatically deposited into the

Career Services account.

Previous Sponsors: 
Ameriprise Financial - Ekeanyanwu & Associates
Ameriprise Financial - Matlock & Associates
Banneker Ventures
Bobbye Sweat
Christus Health
Eaton Corporation
Enterprise Holding
Kamesha Freeman
Mercedes-Benz Financial Services
Murphy USA
Nyerere & Kerri Billups 
Sam's Club
Synchrony Financial 
Taylor Construction Management
U.S. Fish & Wildlife
USDA - Forest Service
Willis Family Dentistry

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Consultant FAQ

Through the years, YMTF has grown from eight to more than 40 consultants per year with the majority being alumni of UAPB. The distinct role of the invited consultants is to share the benefits of their work experiences and provide a realistic, yet optimistic view of the challenges and opportunities students can expect.   In addition, they are to inspire students to believe in their ability to achieve, discover the power of purpose, empower themselves with determination and continually break through and overcome all obstacles.    

As a YMTF Consultant you will have the opportunity to:

  • Team with other professionals, while conducting formal and informal classroom visits.
  • Increase your professional networks
  • Obtain personal satisfaction from making a difference to the career development of college and high school students
  • Invest in the lives of over 1,000 college and high school students
  • Enhance your skills

Frequently Asked Questions

How are consultants selected?

  • By referral
  • On a volunteer basis  
  • Recommendation through  involvement with the Office of Career Service  

What are the requirement to be a YMTF Consultant?

  • Must allocate the time required to perform all YMTF duties and devote ample time and effort, beforehand, to adequately prepare to conduct meaningful, relevant, and interactive classroom sessions.
  • Make all scheduled classroom visitations and be an active participant with other team members.
  • Attend all other scheduled YMTF program events/activities. These include orientation, planning sessions, team meetings, networking sessions, assemblies, luncheons/banquets and other student activities.
  • Complete all administrative requirements (e.g. evaluations, feedback, reports, etc.), within the requested time frames.
  • Be available and accessible to students who may desire additional discussions/one-on-one time for counsel, advice or networking.
  • Be positive and professional at all times
  • Embrace YMTF ideals
  • Incur all expenses involved with participation either on your own or by employer

When is the program held?

  • YMTF begins on the last Sunday in February and ends on the following Tuesday.  Beginning and ending times will vary.  

Once I Sign-up, is participation mandatory each year?

  • Although participation is not mandatory, we welcome your involvement each year.

Is participation limited to UAPB Alumni?

  • No.

Previous Consultants

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Student FAQ

The role of YMTF is to prepare students to make a successful transition from college to the real world of work.  Each participant is paired with a consultant based on their major and career goals.  Student roles include student liaison, program participant, and usher. The program is open to all UAPB students that have a resume on file in the Office of Career Services. 

As a YMTF Participant, you will have the opportunity to:

  • Network with professionals from business and government agencies
  • Develop the following soft skills: communication, interpersonal, leadership, work ethics, and networking
  • Obtain or interview for summer internships, Cooperative Education or permanent placements
  • Interact with nationally known speakers
  • Build your resume

Frequently Asked Questions

How are students selected?

  • By referral
  • On a volunteer basis  
  • Recommendation through involvement with the Office of Career Services

What are the requirements to be a student participant?

  • Must attend all student and team meetings, orientation, networking sessions, assemblies, luncheons/banquets and other activities
  • Must allocate the time required to perform all YMTF duties
  • Must be prompt, positive and professional at all times
  • Must follow dress code guidelines
  • Embrace YMTF ideals
  • Must have a resume on file in the Office of Career Services

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Success Stories

I graduated from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff May 2010 with a Bachelor’s of Science Business Administration degree with a concentration in Marketing. One of the most impactful events throughout my collegiate experience was YMTF and it continues to influence my everyday success. During undergrad, I had the opportunity to intern three consecutive summers with various organizations which lead to full time employment with a Fortune 500 company. Being a student liaison for professional consultants opened my eyes to what it means to be successful and the importance of giving back and teaching. I learned the importance of building skill sets and experiences while in college that will help build resumes. The importance of networking and how to network with a purpose. I also learned how the prep for interviews and close successfully. Furthermore, I learned the importance of having mentors and advocates truly invested. As a professional now, I am committed to supporting the YMTF event and UAPB students. The Office of Career services gave me priceless awareness and access to decision makers across various industries and close knit mentorship only the YMTF program could offer. Without a doubt, YMTF has and continues to be a strong influence to my professional and personal growth.  I will continue to participate as a professional consultant and motivate others to do the same. Thank you to Mrs. Cherry and the Office of Career Services staff for caring and investing so much about UAPB students. 

Joseph Cogshell
May 2010 Graduate

Through my involvement with YMTF, I realized how important this program is to student success and the opportunities for both students and consultants to learn from one another.  For example, the future work force and workplaces are changing at rapid rates.  Getting firsthand knowledge of the diverse skill sets such as diversity of thoughts and talents that young people are bringing to the workplace and their expectations (whether right or wrong), allows companies to strategically prepare for this change.  YMTF is a win/win opportunity for all who actually emerge themselves into the program.  Having the opportunity to give back to the University by serving on various alumni boards and committees have heighten my personal career development, in addition to increasing my commitment to give back.

Bobbye Sweat
May 1989 Graduate




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