The youth program provides jobs and academic enrichment for youth ages 17-24. This program is designed to prepare youth for entry into the labor force and includes such activities as work experience, work testing, vocational education, and remedial education, counseling, and support services. Heavy emphasis is placed on maintaining and improving educational levels. Work experience is designed to stress the necessity of strong reading and math skills in the world of work. Work based learning and apprenticeships focus on youth who need to develop skills for the workplace and in cooperation with several businesses throughout the four counties. Participants are exposed to a variety of business and career opportunities.
Services for youth include
- Work experience, with academic and occupational learning
- Financial literacy education
- Entrepreneurial skills training
- Services that provide labor market and employment information about in-demand industry sectors or occupations available in the local area
- Activities that help youth prepare for and transition to post-secondary education and training
- Tutoring and study skills training
- Leadership development opportunities
- Adult mentoring
- Comprehensive guidance and counseling
- Supportive services such as transportation reimbursement or bus passes and childcare assistance
- Career exploration and internships to prepare for the world of work
The program may also assist eligible students with dual credit courses and post-high school vocational training (up to a maximum of an Associate in Applied Science degree) or on-the-job training. The program includes assistance for out-of-school youth including high school dropouts and offenders. High school dropouts are encouraged to obtain their GED or high school diploma. Work experience can be coupled with GED preparation as an added incentive to allow the participant to earn and learn. The WIOA youth program is designed to provide services and activities throughout the year either through in-house sponsored activities or partnerships with other youth programs/providers.
Out-of-school youth must be aged 17-24, not attending any school, and meet one or more additional conditions, which could include: School dropout; within the age of compulsory attendance but has not attended for at least the most recent complete school year calendar quarter; holds a secondary school diploma or recognized equivalent and is low-income and is basic skills deficient or an English language learner; subject to the juvenile or adult justice system; homeless, runaway, in foster care or aged out of the foster care system, eligible for assistance under Section 477, Social Security Act, or in out-of-home placement; pregnant or parenting; an individual with a disability; a low-income person who requires additional assistance to enter or complete an educational program or to secure and hold employment.
In-school youth must be aged 17-24, attending school, low income, which may include free & reduced lunch and/or food stamp recipients, and meet one or more additional conditions, which could include: Basic skills deficient; English language learner; an offender; homeless, runaway, in foster care or aged out of the foster care system; pregnant or parenting; an individual with a disability; a person who requires additional assistance to enter or complete an educational program or to secure and hold employment.