The Starke County Youth Club has announced the appointment of Melissa Smith to the position of program director for the organization. Executive Director Irene Szakonyi said that the combination of SCYC’s growth and Smith’s skills make this the perfect time for such a change at the club.
“Over the past five years, SCYC has increased our scope of service nearly twofold,” said Szakonyi. “We have increased the amount of time we are available, the types of programming have been expanded, and our staff and number of students served have grown. These fantastic changes have been wonderful for our organization and families, but have tested the limits of our human resources. Fortunately, we have an exception asset in Melissa, who brings over 20 years of experience with children and educators to her work with the club. I’m delighted for this change in our organization and look forward to continuing our work together.”
Smith started with the program as a site coordinator in Knox in 2005, and she also brings experience as a private tutor as part of her own business. She will be responsible for providing leadership and management to various components of the organization, including the professional development of staff as well as student recruitment.
Smith says she will greatly miss the personal relationships she has developed with the students at Knox Community Elementary School, but she says she’s confident that this is a great opportunity to look at the big picture. She says she hopes to further shape a helpful and welcome place for each of the program’s 600 children.
She officially assumed her new role on June 1.