Reengaging Opportunity Youth to Improve Life Outcomes
Over the last decade, decision makers have given greater attention to young adults who are neither working nor in school, as these young people face many challenges during the transition into adulthood. Various projects have been created across the nation to find ways to successfully reengage these youth in the labor market. These reports take a closer look at building career paths for youth to not only improve their life outcomes, but also to help meet America's workforce needs.
Reengaging New York City’s Disconnected Youth Through Work: Implementation and Early Impacts of the Young Adult Internship Program. 2017. This report provides implementation findings and presents one-year impacts on employment from a random assignment evaluation of the Young Adult Internship Program (YAIP). YAIP aims to improve the employment and educational outcomes of youth who are not in school and do not work through a paid internship and supportive services. “Overall, YAIP was well implemented. The program was delivered very similarly across providers and with a high degree of fidelity to the program model as designed.” It is too early to determine whether YAIP is meeting its goal of improving life outcomes of youth. However, the report results found that the “program group was more likely than the control group to have worked during the year following random assignment, but the employment rates of the two groups converged during the quarters after the YAIP internships ended. The program group also had higher earnings than the control group.”
Developing Positive Young Adults: Lessons from Two Decades of YouthBuild Programs. 2015. This report pairs qualitative findings from two different studies of YouthBuild to explore intangible participant outcomes, such as optimism and self-efficacy. The first study, from 1997, drew on interviews with participants and staff, while the second, from 2014, involved a survey of program directors. “While limited in scope, the survey and interviews with YouthBuild program directors support the findings in [the study] from 20 years ago: ‘When young people are ready to change and the YouthBuild model is implemented well, it appears to have the components and qualities that they need to point their lives in a positive direction.’”
Creating Pathways to Employment: The Role of Industry Partnerships in Preparing Low-Income Youth and Young Adults for Careers in High-Demand Industries. 2015. This report identifies how employer-led industry partnerships can contribute to employment pathways for Opportunity Youth; and how those partnerships can be harnessed to offer a clear sequence of education coursework, training credentials and job placement in high-demand sectors. “The key learning emerging from this initiative is the importance of a collective, place-based effort that is driven by employers and industry partnerships and relies on community providers and education/training providers, as well as local workforce intermediaries, to build high-quality employer-connected pathways.”