Google invests in Skills Training Program for low-income workers

The employment programs, Year Up and Merit America, will receive funding to train students in technical skills with content from Google’s career certificate courses in IT support, analytics data, project management, and user experience design. Both nonprofits have used the Google course, which provides general technical training but does not teach students to master the use of Google’s software tools.

But a key part of successful training programs, experts agree, is what they do beyond teaching technical skills. Programs also emphasize soft skills such as teamwork, communication, and a willingness to learn new things. They often help arrange child care and transportation. They have career coaches, social workers and mentors, as well as foster peer groups and alumni networks.

“Skills and competencies are important, but so is building one’s social capital,” says Gerald Chertavian, founder and chief executive officer of Year Up.

Born more than two decades ago, Year Up is now a national organization serving low-income workers aged 18 to 26. It consists of three to six months of technical training followed by a six-month internship at a company. The organization says 80% of graduates are employed within four months with an average starting salary of $44,000, more than double their previous earnings.

Social Finance, which is managing the investment program, is looking to add several job training groups this year. An independent research firm, MDRC, will evaluate the performance of training and placement programs over time.

“We will allocate more money to whoever delivers the better results,” said Tracy Palandjian, chief executive officer of Social Finance, which is not related to online lender SoFi. “It’s all about impact.”

Merit America has grown rapidly since it began offering courses in 2018. From the start, it was a hybrid program, with self-paced online training, face-to-face meetings every once a week with the trainees and in-person sessions with the coach.

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/17/business/google-training-program.html Google invests in Skills Training Program for low-income workers

Fry Electronics Team

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