USDOL Selects Nine Communities, Partners to Expand, Improve Workforce Opportunities for all Young People

Mar 13, 2023 | News

To expand opportunities for youth workers across the nation and improve their employment outcomes, the U.S. Department of Labor has selected the first nine communities and their associated partners in its Youth Systems Building Academy.

Lake County has been selected as one of the communities. The nine chosen “communities” held their first in-person session from March 7-9, 2023, and will collaborate online before the academy convenes again in the summer of 2023.

Administered by the department’s Employment and Training Administration, the Youth Systems Building Academy was established in December 2022 to provide training and technical assistance to workforce systems and their community partners to help them explore, design, test, implement or expand approaches to attract young workers and support them once they join the workforce. The academy seeks to strengthen local organizations’ ability to serve young people between 16 to 24 years of age who are disconnected from school and the workforce, and those in marginalized and underrepresented communities.

Through the academy, workforce systems’ “communities” will exchange knowledge and ideas, address common challenges, share best practices and receive ongoing consultation and technical support to develop strategies that improve youth employment outcomes.

The initiative aligns with the department’s Youth Employment Works strategy, announced March 9, 2023, and will build on the strategy’s “No Wrong-Door” approach that supports policies, partnerships and strategies to provide equitable access for all young people to prepare for high-quality career paths.

As part of the strategy, the department issued a national Call to Action inviting stakeholders and partners in the field to participate in advancing this effort.

The following organizations were selected:

  1. Lake County Workforce Development Department, Waukegan, IL
    Partners: College of Lake County’s Indiana, Illinois, Iowa Foundation for Fair Contracting, International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150, Lake County’s Regional Office of Education, Lake County Workforce Development Board
  2. Alaska Workforce Investment Board, Anchorage, AK
    Partners: Alaska Job Corps Center, Cook Inlet Tribal Council, Covenant House Alaska
  3. Workforce Boulder County, Boulder, CO
    Partners: Boulder County Department of Community Services Community Action Program, Department of Housing & Human Services’ Colorado Works
  4. South Central Iowa Local Workforce Development Board, Ottumwa, IA
    Partners: City of Ottumwa, First Church of the Open Bible, Iowa Workforce Development, Legacy Foundation, Ottumwa Community School District, Ottumwa Job Corps Center
  5. GeauxJobs, Hammond, LA
    Partners: Northshore Regional STEM Center, Southeastern Louisiana University, Northshore Technical Community College, Tangipahoa Chamber of Commerce, Tangipahoa Parish Economic Development, Tangipahoa Parish School System
  6. Buffalo and Erie County Workforce Investment Board, Buffalo, NY
    Partners: Community Foundation of Greater Buffalo, Erie County Department of Social Services, Service Collaborative of WNY Inc.
  7. New York City’s Office of Talent and Workforce Development, New York, NY
    Partners: City University of New York, New York City Public Schools, New York Cit Department of Social Services-Human Resources Administration, Department of Youth and Community Development, Workforce Development Board
  8. Worksystems, Portland, OR
    Partners: Multnomah County, Portland Opportunities Industrialization Center, Rosemary Anderson High School
  9. Region III Workforce Development Board of Kanawha County, Charleston, WV
    Partners: Bridge Valley Community & Technical College, Human Resource Development Foundation Inc., West Virginia Division of Rehabilitation Services