AUGUST 17, 2021
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) has awarded $3,893,100 to 40 organizations to provide young people workforce development and training opportunities during the 2021-2022 state fiscal year.
Metro-focused organizations received 76% of available funds while Greater Minnesota received 22% of available funds. The remaining 2% of available funds went to organizations serving both Metro and Greater Minnesota. DEED's Office of Youth Development awarded the Youth at Work grants to organizations providing services to economically disadvantaged or at-risk youth ages 14 to 24.
These programs will support youth of color, youth with disabilities, and economically-disadvantaged youth to connect with good-paying jobs in high-growth industries. It's what we need: a targeted approach for youth who face the largest systemic barriers. Youth development and job training is really crucial to the well-being of our communities and our state's economy.
Youth at Work Opportunity Grants Program is DEED's flagship competitive youth employment program and it supports the equity goals of Governor Tim Walz and DEED Commissioner Steve Grove.
Per state statute (116L.562), the program prioritizes service to youth of color and youth with disabilities. In addition, youth must either be economically disadvantaged or be considered at-risk. Youth who are considered at-risk may have barriers that include: homelessness, involvement in juvenile justice system, pregnant/parenting, a potential or actual dropout.
As the state continues to make investments to get young Minnesotans into training and development programs, DEED's Youth at Work program partners across the state are helping support the workforce of today and tomorrow in finding economic stability and developing new skills.
In Cristo Rey’s Corporate Work Study Program, students work for five full days per month at one of 80+ corporations, businesses, or non-profits, an increasing number of which require the use of technical skills. Youth at Work grant funds support students’ preparation for future careers in three ways: 1) students will learn and practice various technical skills across a four-year business curricula and then at their workplace, 2) program staff can maximize student and company supports, thereby maximizing student work performance and company satisfaction, and 3) program staff and company supervisors will access increased Professional Development and training opportunities to enhance their work with students.
Congratulations to the other 40 organizations that have been awarded grants!