Quigley seeks to spread the word about Manchester’s youth services department

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Michael Quigley, Director of the Office of Youth Services for the city of Manchester. Photo/Andrew Sylvia

MANCHESTER, NH – Michael Quigley is still relatively new to the Queen City but he has big plans for one often overlooked part of Manchester’s city government.

Since coming on board in late December, Quigley has sought to make his mark on the Manchester Office of Youth Services (OYS) as its new director, building upon years of experience in Massachusetts. After graduating from college in Maine, Quigley returned to his hometown of Quincy, Mass., where he became a long-term substitute teacher. Eventually, he transitioned into the Massachusetts Youthbuild Coalition, helping youth in crisis earn their GED or HiSET while also learning a trade.

With the COVID-19 pandemic drastically altering the role to which he had become accustomed, Quigley sought new opportunities, which led him to Manchester.

Although the Office of Youth Services is smaller than the team he left in Massachusetts, Quigley says he’s happy he made the move to the Granite State.

“It’s been refreshing, the team here is eager to be heard,” he said. “They’re eager for people to see their work and I think we’re at the beginning of becoming something even bigger.”

Until this point, OYS primarily worked with the Manchester School District to help at-risk youth avoid negative decisions, but it has been expanding its scope to help Manchester youth work on achieving college and professional development goals while also providing access to and operating various programs and initiatives directly and in partnership with local non-profits and other organizations.

Quigley notes that OYS services are available for all Manchester youth and it is all free, but it has been something he says has been something of a “well-kept secret” in the past.

With new staff members slowly coming on board in addition to himself, Quigley hopes to see a large response for the summer programming calendar being released later this month as well as significant interest in the Manchester Youth Council.

For anyone not familiar with the program, the Manchester Youth Council seeks Manchester residents aged 14-21 looking to act as leaders and spokespeople for their peers and help provide guidance on youth needs for the city’s decision-makers.

“It’s always adults around the table deciding what youth need, but the real work happens when we allow the youth to drive that process,” said Quigley.

More information on the Manchester Youth Council, which is accepting applications until September, as well as other OYS programs, can be found on the OYS page of the City of Manchester website.


 

About this Author

Andrew Sylvia

Assistant EditorManchester Ink Link

Born and raised in the Granite State, Andrew Sylvia has written approximately 10,000 pieces over his career for outlets across Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont. On top of that, he's a licensed notary and licensed to sell property, casualty and life insurance, he's been a USSF trained youth soccer and futsal referee for the past six years and he can name over 60 national flags in under 60 seconds according to that flag game app he has on his phone, which makes sense because he also has a bachelor's degree in geography (like Michael Jordan). He can also type over 100 words a minute on a good day.