Youth Workforce

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

A team from Worksystems was among a delegation of Portland-based organizations that traveled to Washington, DC in early March to take part in a gathering designed to create positive outcomes for young people affected by violence or involved with the justice system. The Youth Systems Building Academy, hosted by the U.S. Dept. of Labor, was a three-day summit focused on creating skill-building and income-generating opportunities for youth facing barriers to employment. // Read more

The Future Ready Oregon initiative, passed by the Oregon Legislature in 2022, is a game-changing, once-in-a-generation investment in Oregon's workforce development system. It provides more than $200 million to help Oregonians access and receive the training, education, and support they need to transition into living-wage careers. // Read more

Opportunity Youth 2022

Date posted: 
December 23rd, 2022

An estimated 34,400 16-to-24-year-olds in the Portland-Vancouver region served by the Columbia-Willamette Workforce Collaborative (CWWC) are neither in school nor working. This accounts for more than 13% of all youth in the region. Approximately 13% of all youth throughout Oregon and Washington meet this definition. These individuals who are disconnected from both educational environments and the workforce are known as opportunity youth. // Read more

SummerWorks Evaluation, 2018

Date posted: 
August 2nd, 2019

As SummerWorks enters its tenth year of placing Portland-area young adults in summer jobs and internships, a recent study conducted by EcoNW shows that program participants achieve greater academic and workforce success. // Read more

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

A new report released today by the three Workforce Development Boards that serve the Portland-SW Washington region finds nearly 30,000 youth ages 16 to 24 are not in school or working (referred to as opportunity youth). Despite a strong regional economy, in which nearly 71,000 jobs were added between 2014 and 2016, the share and number of opportunity youth in the region remained stagnant since the last report in 2016.

Opportunity Youth represent an important workforce resource for the regional economy.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

We are on track to place 1,000 area youth in jobs this summer!

On July 1, an event was held at the Oregon Historical Society Museum to celebrate this exciting milestone. Commissioner Smith, Mayor Hales and Senator Wyden were guest speakers and provided motivation and encouragement to the SummerWorks program participants in attendance.

KOIN covers SummerWorks Celebration!

Thank you to our Sponsors: // Read more

Monday, June 20, 2016

Each year, Worksystems provides paid work experiences for roughly 1,000 young people at local employers. For many of them, this is their first job.

Supervisors at the work sites have reported that the cultural divide makes it challenging for them to effectively manage Millennials in the workplace. In response, we commissioned the development of an online training to help supervisors better understand the unique aspects of this generation and provide them with tools to create an inclusive and productive work environment.
  // Read more

Monday, July 27, 2015

This summer, over 750 area youth are engaging in a paid work experience - a first for many of them.

Worksystems' SummerWorks program provides work readiness training and funding for disadvantaged youth to participate in a 6-9 week paid work experience. The City of Portland, Multnomah County, and Washington County provide significant funding and work sites to support the program. In addition, over 60 public and private sector sponsors are contributing this year - doubling last year's number! Thank you to all of our sponsors who make this valuable program possible. // Read more

Monday, February 23, 2015

Today, Worksystems took a group of more than 30 young people to meet with their legislators and speak before the Senate Workforce Committee about the importance of youth employment. The effort was in support of the $15 million in the Governor's proposed budget to support jobs for youth.

Several elected officials including Senate President Peter Courtney, Senator Michael Dembrow, and Oregon Governor Kate Brown (pictured) met with the youth to offer a civics lesson on the Oregon political system and to hear from them how work experience positively impacted their lives. // Read more