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Reconnecting today’s disconnected youth


Today teen employment is at 25.8 percent. Over 6 million youth ages 16 to 24 are not attached to either school or work. What’s causing the problem?

Many community-based organizations, schools, and federal programs are trying to address this issue. WIOA (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act) is amongst one of the federal acts raising awareness and finding ways for young people to get education and training, and ultimately a job.

Within WIOA, youth workforce investment activities are “taking strides by refocusing the youth formula program to serve disconnected youth by requiring minimum of 75 percent of funds are used for out-of-school youth compared to 30 percent under WIA (the previous act)” according to Clasp.

This redirected funding gives states and local communities dedicated resources to implement effective employment, education, and youth development strategies for the most vulnerable young people in highly distressed communities.

There is an emphasis on education, training, apprenticeships, and career pathways. They are also beginning to draw attention to financial literacy and entrepreneurship.

Preparing today’s youth for a successful future is critical to the sustainability of our society.

How can you help disconnected youth become more successful, contributing members of their community and society at large?

Under WIOA each state has created a Unified Workforce Plan that directs state resources to address issues like disconnected youth.

Another resource is state Youth Boards that allocate resources and manage youth programs.

Brought to you by JIST Career Solutions, providing relevant workforce resources like assessments, workbooks and videos. Check out the new virtual workforce center JIST Gateway at


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