Thursday, December 5, 2013

JobsFirstNYC December 2013 Newsletter

Seizing the Opportunity

Alan Momeyer, Vice President of Human Resources at Loews Corporation, who became the chair of the JobsFirstNYC board of directors in June, had this to say in light of New York City's first mayoral transition in twelve years:

"There has never been a more important or opportune time to address the critical problem of out-of-school, out-of-work youth. 

New York City is the capital of unemployment with 172,000 such young people. With a new Administration committed to creating better opportunities, and with the business cycle looking to sustain its growth, JobsFirstNYC wants to work with both labor and private and public companies to make sure we work together to deliver hope for a better future."

First Steps for the YASEP 

Learning Community

The first phase of JobsFirstNYC's new local initiative - the Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project (YASEP) - began in October with a series of meetings for members of the YASEP Learning Community. Representatives from the five workforce partnerships awarded planning grants gathered at three full-day meetings, learning from national experts and each other about innovative approaches using a sectoral approach to improve employment outcomes for young adults 18-24 years old, who are out of school and out of work.

"I've been in the field 30-plus years and I've never had a learning opportunity as rich, engaging and thoughtfully planned as this one," said John Mancuso, Executive Director of Comprehensive Development Inc., which is focusing on the healthcare sector in collaboration with New York Alliance for Careers in Healthcare (NYACH). "The meetings and process so far have embodied a real learning community behavior - starting with respectful inquiry on who we are, where we want to go and helping us think through, with thought-provoking experts, what technical assistance we need to put theory into practice."

Sheila Maguire, a workforce development consultant with YASEP, reflected on the work so far, stating, "Bringing people from education, youth development and workforce development fields, as well as employers, together with national leaders in sectoral employment has led to lively sessions with great conversations about critical issues. Each person brings their own perspective and experience to their partnership and to the larger learning community. The models that are being created out of this work are blending the hard won experience of each of these fields. I am excited to see the approaches that emerge out of this work to connect out-of-school and out-of-work young people to real employment opportunities."

National Convening of 

Opportunity Youth Incentive Fund 

Representatives of JobsFirstNYC and the Bronx Opportunity Network (BON) traveled to Aspen, Colorado to participate in the Opportunity Youth Incentive Fund Convening, November 4-6. Hosted by the Aspen Institute's Forum for Community Solutions, the convening brought together leaders from 21 communities who had received development grants to build cross-sector collaborations with the goal of bringing 6.7 million young people back into education and the workforce. 

Lou Miceli, Executive Director of JobsFirstNYC, Courtney Hawkins, Senior Vice President for Workforce, Education and Youth at FEGS, Jim Marley, Assistant Executive Director for Bronx Community-Based Programs at Good Shepherd Services, and Pardeice McGoy, Director of Young Adult Initiatives, Youth Development Institute met as a team representing the BON and consulted with the other leaders to share notes on progress made and to learn best practices on using data, generating support from local funders, and building effective collaborations. 

The convening in Aspen included a wonderful and talented group of leaders and it was very heartening to know that so many are committed to ensuring that young people are well-positioned to successfully engage and stay connected to the economic life of our country. It was also inspiring to have so many young people themselves as participants - many current or former Opportunity Youth - who are so committed to helping others succeed.

Keri Faulhaber Joins 

JobsFirstNYC Staff

It is with great pleasure that we announce that Keri Faulhaber, who has worked as a consultant with us over the past year, has officially joined the JobsFirstNYC team as Project and Operations Director. 

Keri brings a wide range of talents and skills to this new role, including project management, development, and media relations experience. She also worked for several years at Public/Private Ventures, where she had a direct hand in supporting several larger, complex workforce projects during her tenure. In her new role, she will be overseeing key aspects of several of our projects, notably the Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project and will continue to support the important work of our workforce partnerships, which presently include the Bronx Opportunity Network, the Lower East Side Employment Network, and the New York City Restaurant Industry Partnership. Welcome, Keri!

Resources for the Field

The Lower East Side Employment Network (LESEN) just announced that Henry Street Settlement and Recycle-A-Bicycle, with additional support from LESEN, have partnered to launch a Bicycle Mechanics Training Program.

The program will cover fundamentals of bicycle mechanics necessary to secure a job in the exciting and growing bicycle transportation, rental, and retail markets.

The goal is to place a high proportion of graduates into livable-wage employment upon completion as mechanics, customer service and support staff, and logistics crew.

While open to the public and Network member participants, public candidates must register with one of LESEN's five agencies in order to participate. 

The upcoming December 5, 2013 orientation is mandatory for all participants. 

Trainees will receive a modest hourly stipend for a required internship from January to March, which amounts to approximately half of the weekly program hours.

Space is limited. Inquire today. 212-478-5400 ext. 202

Saturday, November 2, 2013

2013-10-16, News & Notes

News from JobsFirstNYC        
October 16, 2013 

Giving Young People in the Lower East Side the Ingredients for Success!   

Luis Vargas was able to break out of the low-wage employment cycle and find his calling as a pastry chef thanks to workforce development workshops and one-on-one services from GOLES, one of six organizations of the Lower East Side Employment Network (LESEN) working collaboratively as one to connect work-ready young adult job seekers to employment opportunities. Luis' success story was recently featured in the New York Post. Click here.

The LESEN has been able to ramp up its great work over the last several years, thanks in part to the 
JobsFirstNYC-supported position of Network Coordinator. One result is Luis Vargas getting the opportunity to advance his career and enjoy a better job!

New York's
Opportunity Youth Agenda
JobsFirstNYC is pleased to be partnering with Campaign for Tomorrow's Workforce, New York City Employment and Training Coalition, and Youth Development Institute to create an advocacy platform for New York City's young adults who are out of school and out of work - New York's OPPORTUNITY Youth Agenda, a unified action plan outlining the investments, innovations, and programming needed to help this population thrive.

We invite executive directors to attend this critical launch event to learn more about New York's OPPORTUNITY Youth Agenda and our plan to create an interconnected public/private system for New York City to dramatically advance academic and career options for young adults who are neither in school nor working.

New York's OPPORTUNITY Youth Agenda
Thursday, October 24, 3:00-5:00pm
The Door - 555 Broome St.

Updates from the field...  

The Youth Development Institute (YDI) is offering a free training tomorrow.

The Youth Development Institute is offering free training around the topic of preparing for the new HSE.

HSE Language Arts Institute on 10/17 (10-4pm). To register, or get more information, please email

Click here (PDF) for more details.


The Workforce Benchmarking Network Seeks Participants

The Corporation for a Skilled Workforce (CSW) invites you to participate in the Workforce Benchmarking Network! (formerly the Benchmarking Project at Public/Private Ventures.)

For more information about the project and details on their upcoming informational webinar click here.

A lost decade for young people?
New economic realities have changed the traditional life cycle of learning, work and retirement, lengthening the time it takes for young people to settle into a career and the age at when older workers retire.

According to a new Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce report, the relationship between education, work and retirement is no longer strictly linear.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

YASEP Awards Planning Grants to Five Workforce Partnerships in NYC

Five Workforce Partnerships Chosen to Help Out-of-School and Out-of-Work Youth Gain Training and Entry into Different Sectors of Employment in New York City 

JobsFirstNYC is proud to announce that as part of our new local initiative—the Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project (YASEP)—five workforce partnerships have been awarded planning grants and will become inaugural members of the YASEP Learning Community. Each partnership will receive a $50,000 grant to plan programs, using a sectoral approach, to improve employment outcomes for young adults 18-24 years old, who are out-of-school and out-of-work, and may not be ready for college at this time.

The grants were created through a collaborative process. JobsFirstNYC first convened a series of informational networking meetings this spring and summer attended by representatives from New York City CBOs, technical assistance providers and sector-based employers.  Based on input from those meetings, a call was put out to the field to create partnerships comprised of at least one organization with capacity and experience delivering skills for a specific sector and one partner with capacity and experience serving young adults, and with employer ties or ability to develop ties quickly.

The response was impressive.  JobsFirstNYC received 15 outstanding applications reflecting a field-wide interest in sectoral-approach learning and cross-organizational collaboration to better serve New York City's young adult population. 

The five partnerships selected are:
Comprehensive Development Inc. (CDI), partnering with New York Alliance for Careers in Healthcare (NYACH) and Per Scholas to focus on the healthcare sector.

Goal:  Identify and enhance certificate trainings in medical and administrative occupations for out-of-school, out-of-work alumni of CDI's three partner schools—Manhattan Comprehensive Night and Day High School, High School for Health Professions and Human Services and City As School High School. The partnership will work with CUNY and focus on engaging employers in the ambulatory healthcare sector.


Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation (CHLDC), partnering with Complete Management Solutions, CitiStorage, LLC, Total Transportation Corp., and St. Nicks Alliance to develop career lattices in the transportation, warehousing, and logistics sector.

Goal:  Build growth opportunities by offering a commercial driver's license prep course, investigating relevant certifications, and exploring cost sharing worker programs.


Queens Community House, partnering with Jacob A. Riis Neighborhood Settlement House, Sunnyside Community Services, and Ocean Bay Community Development Corporation to work together with employers in the food industry.

Goal:  Create a borough-wide collaboration focused, particularly but not exclusively in neighborhood-based food industry businesses.


Per Scholas, partnering with FEGS, BronxWorks, Comprehensive Development Inc. (CDI), Northern Manhattan Improvement Corporation (NMIC), and the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce to focus on the Information Technology sector.

Goal:  Create a network of community-based youth-serving organizations that have the knowledge and connections to prepare young adults to be successful in Information Technology jobs.


Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), working together with FEGS and BronxWorks, on behalf of young adults in the Bronx.

Goal:  Establish a full-time coordinator to work with these neighborhood-based organizations to develop a system for the training, hiring, retaining, and promoting of young adults from the Bronx in various job sectorshospitality, food services, and retailat WCS's Bronx Zoo.

Speaking about the YASEP initiative from the employers’ perspective, Alan Momeyer 
Vice President of Human Resources at Loews Corporation, and JobsFirstNYC board chair stated,  “In an age of specialization, we in corporate employment look for jobseekers who have the unique qualities and talents that let us distinguish our brands from our competitors.  YASEP is designed to make employers’ lives easier by preparing job placement organizations to understand our particular staffing needs and to provide the people that we must have to survive and prosper.”

As one of the funders that supports YASEP, Laurie Dien, Senior Program Officer at The Pinkerton Foundation, said, “Requiring partnerships to build a sturdy three-legged stool —employer engagement, relevant training, and support at the workplace—greatly increases the chance that young people will not only find employment but also succeed on the job.”

The Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project is made possible with the generous support of the following funders: The Annie E. Casey Foundation, the Capital One Foundation, the Clark Foundation, the Ira W. DeCamp Foundation, the New York Community Trust, and The Pinkerton Foundation. 

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Eduployment - A call to action

The youth employment crisis has never been worse in the United States.  Fewer young people are working today than at any time since records started being kept in 1948.  America has the smallest percentage of young adults in the labor force of any industrialized country.  And yet, the longer it takes to get into workforce translates into diminished earnings for years to comes.

None of this is new information, of course, and policy makers and advocates have been talking about  youth unemployment for years.  But that conversation has grown stale, according to a new report published by The Youth Transition Funders Group, the result of rigidity in the ways we think about pathways to adulthood, mismatch of policies and investments, and a focus on short-term fixes over long-term solutions.

Instead, the report calls for an overhaul of youth policy based on "eduployment"-- a blending of school and work preparedness -- to ensure that young people successfully navigate our education systems AND the labor market.  The main components include:

  • Building a unified voice among youth advocates for policy change
  • Enhancing student connections to schools
  • Extending graduation timelines to recognize that young people may require 5 to 6 years to complete high school
  • Making education more responsive with personalization and flexibility, the incorporation of competency-based curricula, increased support for over-age students, and enhanced accountability
  • Ensuring that all students are exposed to work experiences while in high school
  • Easier transitions into higher education and post-secondary credentials.

Changing the conversation to incorporate a more holistic view of the youth employment crisis won't be easy, the report concedes, but must be done if any meaningful solutions are to be found for the nation's 7 million out of school and out of work 16-24 year olds.

Download the report here

Thursday, May 2, 2013

JFNYC releases Barriers to Entry: The Increasing Challenges Faced by Young Adults in the New York City Labor Market (May 2013)

As part of its ongoing mission to expand knowledge about the youth employment crisis, JobsFirstNYC is pleased to announce the release of its latest report: Barriers to Entry: The Increasing Challenges Faced by Young Adults in the New York City Labor Market (May 2013)

Commissioned and contributed to by JFNYC and authored by James Parrott of Fiscal Policy Institute and Lazar Treschan of Community Service Society, this study investigates the plight of 18- to 24-year-olds in the New York City labor market. The report analyzes current levels and recent trends in the demand for -- and identifies key characteristics of -- the supply of young adult labor.  Throughout the analysis, we place particular emphasis on those who are out of school and out of work (OSOW).

The report also provides, through a discussion of key labor market concepts and measurements, insight into how to best understand levels and trends related to young adult employment.  Key findings include:

  • Young adults as a whole in New York City are working less but receiving more schooling; yet OSOW rates remain high.
  • More competition from older workers is making it harder for young workers to find jobs.
  • Less educated young workers are finding it harder to progress out of the lowest-paying jobs.
  • The recession has led to significant increases in the portion of OSOW young people who are unemployed or discouraged workers, as jobs have become even scarcer for young people.
  • Certain communities show alarmingly high concentrations of OSOW youth; 18 of the city’s 55 neighborhoods are home to over half of the city’s OSOW young adults.
  • A significant portion of the OSOW population faces major barriers to obtaining and succeeding in employment.
The purpose of this study is to raise questions through an in-depth analysis of labor market data and, based on our findings, offer a set of implications for policymakers concerned with reducing the numbers of OSOW young adults. We hope that it can serve as a vehicle for discussions about how JFNYC’s partners in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors can make use of this data to advance their work.

Click here to download the report.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

2013-04-24 News & Events

News & Events from JobsFirstNYC          
April 24, 2013  

Please Note: Barriers to Entry Release Event Registration is Closed Effective Today

We received an unexpectedly large response for our forthcoming release event on May 2, 2013 for Barriers to Entry. Over 160 people have RSVP'd for the event, and we will not have space in the room we are using for this event to accommodate others. 

At this time, we are closing registration and are creating a wait-list in the event of cancelations among the current registrants. We are in discussions about potentially hosting additional events to discuss the report, which may be borough-specific. Stay tuned for more details. If you want to be on the wait-list, please contact Lou Miceli at

The Barriers to Entry report will be released in the coming days. Stay tuned!  

Support for this new report was provided by the Altman Foundation, the Bodman Foundation, the Clark Foundation, and the Valentine Perry Snyder Fund. 

Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project Officially Launches! Letters of Intent due May 3rd, 2013

Yesterday, 50 leaders came together to learn about our new Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project, and by the assessment of those in attendance, the meeting was a great success. We are very pleased and very excited for the field. 

Participants of the meeting:
  • Received a detailed overview of the project - its genesis, the rationale to do this work, and how the project will unfold over the next three years;
  • Were afforded an opportunity to network among those in attendance and to consider what might be ideal institutional partners to comprise emerging collaborations that would choose a specific sector of focus in order to create demand-drive strategies to connect young people to specific employers;
  • Received specific instructions on how to submit a Letter of Intent to apply to be part of the Learning Community which will be assembled as part of the planning phase of the project in the coming months.  
In a broad call to the field, JobsFirstNYC is accepting Letters of Intent beginning today. The deadline for submission is May 3rd, 2013 at 12 p.m. (we cannot offer extensions), and you can download the materials shared in the meeting (which includes a document that provides instructions on how to submit a Letter of Intent). To access this information, please click here (ZIP folder).  

In order to attend the next YASEP planning meeting on May 7th, we must receive a Letter of Intent from your institution

Letters of Intent must be submitted by e-mail and addressed to Evelyn Fernandez-Ketcham, Deputy Executive Director, JobsFirstNYC. You can send the letter directly to Evelyn at

You can learn more about this project by downloading the project overview here. (PDF)

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

2013-04-11 News & Events

News & Events from JobsFirstNYC          
April 11, 2013  

Save the Dates and RSVP: Important Upcoming Events From JobsFirstNYC

Since we have several important events coming up and are getting some questions on how to participate, we thought we would lay out the dates here for you. If you have any questions about these events, you can contact Lou Miceli at We look forward to seeing you!

APRIL 23, 9-Noon: First Stakeholder Meeting for the Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project (YASEP)

After a series of meetings earlier this year, we are planning for an introductory meeting about the Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project. All are welcome! Because of space constraints, we ask that you register only two people per organization, and we ask that people who attend are in a position to make decisions on behalf of your organizations. 

The purpose of the meeting will be to talk about this new project, discuss how direct service workforce organizations, industry skills training providers, employer intermediaries, and employers might participate in this project and lay out the key phases of the project. As a key element of this project is to build collaborative approaches, this meeting will help interested organizations to identify potential partners. Participants in this meeting will also understand how to submit a letter of intent to participate in a YASEP learning community to be formed in the early summer of 2013. You can learn more about this project by downloading an overview of the project (PDF). 

A detailed e-mail was shared with the field about this event last week, and if you have questions about the meeting or those details, you can contact Evelyn Fernandez-Ketcham at JobsFirstNYC by phone at 646-738-5677 or by e-mail at

This event will take place at the Macaulay Honors College at City University, but due to space constraints, RSVP's are required. 

This project is supported by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the Bodman Foundation, the Capital One Foundation, the Clark Foundation, and the Pinkerton Foundation

May 2, 9-11 a.m.: Barriers to Entry Release Event
We are very pleased to present the field with an up-to-date analysis of how out-of-school/work young adults are faring in the New York City Labor Market. An e-vite through Constant Contact went out to the field regarding this event yesterday. We got an immediate response, so if you wish to join us, please hurry to RSVP in order to reserve a seat. This event will take place at the New York Times Building (in Times Square), and all are welcome. You will hear from the authors of the report and we will discuss the implications of this new study and how we might use the key information it surfaces to better assist young people who remain at the fringes of the labor market. 

RSVP's are required for this event due to security regulations at the New York Times Building. 

Support for this new report was provided by the Altman Foundation, the Bodman Foundation, the Clark Foundation, and the Valentine Perry Snyder Fund. 

Farewell to Gwen Hill
We hope you will join us in extending our best wishes to Gwen Hill, who joined us in November of 2011 and has done a range of things to help build the organization in her role as Office Administrator. After completing her graduate degree program earlier this year, she is joining a non-profit organization in Brooklyn that is focusing on helping empower and educate young people and to engage them in urban agricultural and sustainability activities. She will still be connected to the field, as one of her newer projects will involve working with NYCHA residents in Red Hook through partnership with Green City Force. 

Thanks for your great work Gwen, and congrats on your new role!

Stay tuned for new developments on the staffing front at JobsFirstNYC

Thursday, March 28, 2013

2013-03-21 News & Events

News & Events from JobsFirstNYC          
March 21, 2013  

Save the Date - April 9: Join the JobsFirstNYC Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project Planning Meeting

JobsFirstNYC is undertaking a new project to explore how sectoral employment approaches and practices can apply to young adult job seekers and benefit the employers this population. To our knowledge, this is the first such effort in the country.  

We have held several meetings with specific stakeholders who are interested in this work, and on April 9, from 9am-noon, we will hold a meeting to bring all the key groups together. The purpose of the meeting will be to talk about this new project, discuss how direct service workforce organizations, industry skills training providers, employer intermediaries, and employers might participate in this project and lay out the key phases of the project. As a key element of this project is to build collaborative approaches, this meeting will help interested organizations to identify potential partners. Learn more by downloading an overview of the project (PDF).

The Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project will include a planning and development period this year, and include two years of implementation. For this session, we are specifically seeking participation from executive directors and senior staff (people within organizations who are empowered to make organizational decisions) to join us.

You can RSVP for this meeting by contacting Gwen Hill at If you have general questions about the project, you can direct these to Lou Miceli at  

This initiative is supported by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the Capital One Foundation, and the Pinkerton Foundation

JobsFirstNYC has been invited to submit a proposal to the Aspen Institute Opportunity Youth Incentive Fund
JobsFirstNYC was pleased to learn this week that we have been chosen along with 15 other groups nationally to apply to participate in a new incentive program - called the Opportunity Youth Incentive Fund (OYIF) to create better employment pipelines for young people that are out-of-school and out-of-work. You can learn more about this fund here.

We are the only New York City organization to receive such an invitation. Should we apply and be selected, this project will involve a year of planning and development and a two-year demonstration period. 

The purpose of OYIF is to demonstrate the positive impact of cross-sector collaboratives on the options and life outcomes of young adults (aged 16-24) who are disconnected from the education and workforce systems and seek new pathways to credentials and careers. The invitation is specifically focusing on the Bronx Opportunity Network (PDF), an existing collaboration among seven community-based organizations in the South Bronx that are serving out-of-school/work young adults in a college access and persistence program. 

In the coming days, we will be working with BON's leadership to consider this important opportunity, which will emphasize strategies to better engage and support aging-out foster care youth in terms of education and workforce services. We will keep you posted on further developments regarding this opportunity.
Save the Date - May 2nd - JobsFirstNYC, Community Service Society, and Fiscal Policy Institute to Release New Report

JobsFirstNYC is pleased to announce the forthcoming release of Barriers to Entry: The Increasing Challenges Faced by Young Adults in the New York City Labor Market. This report, authored by Lazar Treschan of the Community Service Society and James Parrott of the Fiscal Policy Institute, takes an in-depth look at both the supply and demand dimensions of the job market faced by New York City's 18-24 out-of-school/work population. The report examines the important trends within the New York City labor market specifically as they relate to young adults' ability to find and advance in jobs. The study also considers the key characteristics of young people, including demographics, where they live, their skills, and barriers they face to connecting to employment opportunities.

On May 2, we will bring together practitioners, funders, policy makers/influencers, employers and others to discuss the findings and implications of this important research. Stay tuned for further announcements.

Still Room to Register: Job Developer Networking Event on Tuesday, March 26
Job Developers' Networking Breakfast
Tuesday, March 26, 8:30-10:30 a.m.
at Sheraton Brooklyn, 228 Duffield Street
Register here
Next week's Job Developer's Networking breakfast (co-hosted by JobsFirstNYC & WPTI) will focus exclusively on how job developers can more effectively engage with employers in order to improve their own workforce development strategy and place more job seekers in quality jobs.

JobsFirstNYC will kick off the discussion by sharing recommendations from our report Going Beyond the Bottom Line: Employer Perspectives on the Young Adult Workforce Development System in New York City (PDF).

We will follow that with breakout sessions in which attendees will have time to engage with employer representatives from Modell's, Swiss Post Solutions, Benchmarc Restaurants, and Community Health Care Association of New York State who will share their unique perspectives on hiring practices, as well as tips for improving your employer relationships.

Contact Gwen Hill at with any questions.  
Join JobsFirstNYC's Employer Engagement Work Group on April 10, from 3-5 p.m.
This first meeting of 2013 will be hosted by the Consortium for Worker Education at 275 7th Avenue, 18th Floor, Manhattan.

We will be discussing JobsFirstNYC's work underway regarding the National Work Readiness Credential and online job applications, as well as identifying through group consensus the older young adult-issues JobsFirstNYC should be addressing in 2013.

All practitioners are welcome to attend. To RSVP, please contact Evelyn Fernandez-Ketcham at