WIOA Youth Program                   connect with us! 

The WIOA Youth program is designed to help eligible youth meet career and educational goals through our year round program that provides:

  • An individualized service strategy for each participant that identifies educational and employment goals and objectives with services and support for positive outcomes
  • Opportunities to improve educational and skill competencies, employability, and life skills
  • Postsecondary educational and training opportunities that lead to the attainment of career readiness and credentials for in-demand occupations
  • Effective connections to employers that provide career exploration, job shadowing, work-based learning, work experience, and youth employment opportunities
  • Opportunities related to leadership development such as teamwork, decision-making, community service, and civic and social responsibility
  • Financial literacy education and development of entrepreneurial skills

There are 14 required program elements that are available through local programs:

  1. Tutoring, study skills training, instruction, and evidence based dropout prevention and recovery strategies that lead to completion of the requirements for a secondary school diploma or its recognized equivalent (including certificate of attendance or similar document for individuals with disabilities) or for a recognized postsecondary credential.
  2. Alternative secondary school services, or dropout recovery services
  3. Paid and unpaid work experience that have as a component academic and occupational education that may include: Summer employment and other employment opportunities available year round - Pre-apprenticeship programs - Internships and job shadowing - On-the-job training opportunities
  4. Occupational skill training (with priority for training programs that lead to postsecondary credentials aligned with in-demand industry sectors).
  5. Education offered concurrently with and in the same context as workforce preparation activities and training for a specific occupation or occupational cluster
  6. Leadership development opportunities that may include community service and peer centered activities encouraging responsibility and other positive civic and social behaviors
  7. Supportive services
  8. Adult mentoring for a total of not less than 12 months
  9. Follow-up services for not less than 12 months
  10. Comprehensive guidance and counseling
  11. Financial literacy education
  12. Entrepreneurial skills training
  13. Services that provide labor market and employment information about in-demand industry sectors (local area) , career awareness, career counseling, and career exploration services
  14. Activities that help youth prepare for and transition to postsecondary education and training

WIOA seeks to expand youth services to reach more out-of-school youth that meet the following eligibility:

Between 16-24 years old who are not attending any school, and who is one or more of the following:

  • A school dropout
  • Within the age of compulsory school attendance but has not attended school for at least the most recent complete school year calendar quarter
  • A recipient of a secondary school diploma or its recognized equivalent who is low income and 1) Basic skills deficient 2) a n English language learner
  • An individual who is subject to the juvenile or adult justice system
  • A homeless individual, a runaway, in foster care or aged out of foster care system
  • An individual who is pregnant or parenting
  • An individual with a disability
  • A low-income individual who requires additional assistance to enter or complete an educational program or to secure and hold employment

Youth services contact numbers:

McMinn & Meigs Counties
     Melanie Powers, Youth Career Specialist
        (423) 570-1107

Hamilton & Sequatchie Counties

    Rebeca Santos, Youth Career Specialist 
       (423) 541-9698

 Bradley & Polk Counties

     Megan Gentry, Youth Career Specialist
        (423) 614-8753

Rhea & Bledsoe Counties
    JaShay Locke, Youth Career Specialist
        (423) 570-1107

Marion County
    Rhonda VanOteghem, Youth Career Specialist    
        (423) 541-9226

Grundy County
  Sandra Meeks, Youth Career Specialist
        (423) 592-0883

 This project is funded under an agreement with the Tennessee Department of Labor & Workforce Development.  Equal Opportunity Employer/Program.  Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities. TDD/TTY TN Relay 711.  

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