City Marks Significant Progress in Key Areas One Year After Release of Career Pathways Report

December 15, 2015

NEW YORK—One year after Mayor de Blasio released the Career Pathways report laying out the administration’s vision to transform workforce development, the City announced significant progress in several key areas of the report. The City has nearly doubled its investments in workforce training over two years, significantly increased investment in “bridge” programs, and launched HireNYC, the largest targeted hiring program in the nation. 

Career Pathways is better preparing New Yorkers for the workforce. One year later, we've doubled our investments in training, improved our skills training with the help of industry partners, and bolstered bridge programs and youth employment. Through these efforts, many more New Yorkers have access to career opportunities,” said Mayor de Blasio.

“With Career Pathways we established an ambitious goal to transform the way our City approaches workforce development,” said Alicia Glen, Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development. “In the past year we have begun the hard work of marching towards that goal, making major investments in program quality while also refocusing those programs that were not aligned with our new framework.  We have a lot more work to do and are excited to continue this momentum with all of our workforce partners across the City.”

Fundamentally, Career Pathways laid out a vision for transforming the City’s workforce programs to reduce the emphasis on basic “rapid attachment” job placement employment services and increase efforts that support long-term employment and career building.

The City’s investments in workforce training nearly doubled to $54.3 million, translating to 4,000 more New Yorkers who will build their skills this year. Career Pathways pledged to bring this investment up to $100 million within five years. This year’s total included $6.3 million spent to train more than 3,000 women, immigrants, and other entrepreneurs looking to expand their businesses, utilizing the WE NYC plan targeted specifically at building resources for women entrepreneurs and the Immigrant Business Initiative, which helps foreign born New Yorkers in growing and starting businesses through support from Citi Community Development.

Investment in Bridge programs – education programs that combine workforce training with a pathway to associate’s degrees – were also significantly increased by $6.4 million. This funding will put nearly 1,000 low-skilled workers on track to obtain family-supporting wages and quality jobs, and represents New York City’s first program of this type. The City has just launched a Bridge Bank, a resource for educators to help expand these programs throughout the community. In all, 18,700 New Yorkers benefited from Bridge, skills training and entrepreneurship programs. 

Investment in youth employment was significantly increased. The Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) increased the number of participants in the Summer Youth Employment Program to over 54,000, the highest number in decades. Additionally, with support from the City Council, DYCD created a year-round program for 4,000 of the summer students called Work, Learn & Grow. Along with the creation of the Center for Youth Employment, charged by Mayor de Blasio with expanding total system capacity to support 100,000 jobs, internships and mentorships for young New Yorkers each year, these efforts illustrate a shared commitment to providing quality and early opportunities for New York City youth.

Finally, the City launched HireNYC, a targeted hiring program aimed at leveraging the City’s purchasing power and economic development investments, which will connect more New Yorkers to quality jobs created by the City’s contracts and investments. 

Other progress on Career Pathways recommendations include continued work on Industry Partnerships to better align training programs to the industry needs, expanding and improving college preparedness programs to yield better long term career prospects – including significant investment by CUNY to increase graduation rates of students earning associate’s degrees – and EDC’s Best for NYC program, which is aimed at highlighting and inspiring worker-friendly practices for businesses.  The full report is available at the City’s Career Pathways website.

The City delivers a number of its workforce programs through public-private partnerships with several of New York City’s largest educational institutions, companies, non-profits and unions. Leadership from many these organizations were integrally involved in the Jobs for New Yorkers Task Force, whose insights initiated the work that ultimately culminated in the release of the Career Pathways report.

“Following Mayor de Blasio’s Career Pathways framework, the Department of Small Business Services is equipping New Yorkers with the skills necessary to build successful careers in the 21st century economy. We are unlocking new employment opportunities for jobseekers in communities across New York City by developing key industry partnerships, strengthening our Workforce1 Centers, and increasing our investments in training,” said Gregg Bishop, Commissioner of the Department of Small Business Services. “Connecting New Yorkers to good jobs with family-supporting wages not only improves the lives of jobseekers, it also ensures that our growing local businesses have access to the world-class talent they need right here in the five boroughs.”

“As part of the City’s commitment to expand career exploration opportunities for young people, DYCD has partnered with other City agencies such as Small Business Services to engage employers in our Summer Youth Employment Program and as a result increased the number of private sector work sites by 25 percent this past summer. Whether it is Pandora, Modell’s or JP Morgan Chase, we are off to great start in our three year campaign to recruit employers,” said Bill Chong, Commissioner, NYC Department of Youth and Community Development.

Human Resources Administration Commissioner Steven Banks said, “We are proud of the progress we’ve made as part of the Mayor’s Career Pathways plan to move New Yorkers in need to the jobs and training that will help them move out of poverty for good, and we look forward to further accomplishments with our fellow City agencies and private partners.”

“With every young person that the Center for Youth Employment provides with a summer job, internship or mentorship opportunity, we are not only empowering the next generation of New Yorkers to achieve their dreams, but also engaging our private sector in training a homegrown talent pool from which they can hire. Through these partnerships, we can make a lasting impact on our City’s workforce, businesses and our economy overall,” said Gabrielle Fialkoff, senior advisor to the Mayor and director of the Mayor’s Office of Strategic Partnerships. “We look forward to continuing to collaborate across sectors and across our city to reach our goal of creating 100,000 youth work experiences over the next five years.”

“When our City’s Career Pathways framework was announced a year ago, a major recommendation was to increase career opportunities for youth and high-need job seekers. The Mayor’s Fund is proud that our Center for Youth Employment is helping to achieve that goal, building a new youth workforce infrastructure that has connected more than 70,000 youth to high-quality work experiences within just the seven months since its launch. Together with city agencies and the support of private employers, we will continue to create more of the opportunities that our kids and our city need in order to thrive in the 21st century economy,” said Darren Bloch, Executive Director of the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City.

"Making significant progress towards redefining pathways allows us to access and maintain stable employment," said Assembly Member Nily Rozic, Chair of the Assembly's Subcommittee on the Emerging Workforce. "I look forward to coordinating with the Mayor's Office of Workforce Development to further improve the job training and readiness programs that help New Yorkers build sustainable, meaningful careers."

‎"This report shows that the City's investment in workforce development programs is paying off- thousands of New Yorkers are now better trained and placed in good-paying jobs. We must continue to invest and expand these programs to ensure jobseekers are properly equipped to tackle competitive jobs and succeed in the workforce. I commend the Administration for its commitment to workforce development and its continued success," said Council Member Ritchie Torres.

"The Career Pathways model has had a transformative impact on the New York City workforce over the past year," said Council Member Daniel Dromm."This multi-million dollar investment has resulted in more job trainings and placement for New Yorkers working to make ends meet.  I applaud Mayor de Blasio for implementing Career Pathways and will continue to partner with him so that our city's families are empowered economically."

“As one of New York City’s largest private employers, JPMorgan Chase shares the City’s commitment to building a workforce system that invests in the skills of New Yorkers. We look forward to our continued collaboration with the Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development and partners throughout the City to create career pathways that align training with the needs of employers,”saidChauncy Lennon, Managing Director and Head of Workforce Initiatives, Global Philanthropy, JPMorgan Chase & Co.

“We applaud the City for increasing its investments in building the skills of New Yorkers and preparing them for good jobs in fast growing sectors with opportunities for career advancement.  Further, by aligning training curricula with the needs of employers, the City is helping ensure that individuals can get the jobs they are preparing for, while helping businesses find the talent they need to grow,” said Laurice Arroyo, Senior Attorney at National Grid and Board Member of the NYC Workforce Development Board.

“CUNY is pleased to continue its partnership with Mayor de Blasio’s administration around the implementation of the Career Pathways framework. In this first year of working together collaboratively to improve and align workforce development programs, we have begun to show a positive impact on the city's workforce system. I’m confident this will lead to improved services and better outcomes for the individuals we serve, and look forward to continuing these efforts,” said John Mogulescu, Senior University Dean for Academic Affairs, CUNY.

"The Literacy Assistance Center is very excited about the launch of WKDEV's NYC Bridge Bank. As a professional development and technical assistance organization working with community-based adult education and out-of-school youth programs to better integrate workforce development and sector-specific content into their curriculum and instruction, the Bridge Bank will serve as an invaluable resource," said Ira Yankwitt, Executive Director, Literacy Assistance Center.

“We are thrilled about CUNY’s decision to expand the Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP) at Bronx Community College to nearly all of its full-time students by 2018. We hope to see CUNY develop a similar effective model targeted to the success of adult learners, including immigrants,” said Deborah King, Executive Director of 1199SEIU Training and Employment Funds.

“Since last year’s release of the New York City Career Pathways plan, United Neighborhood Houses has appreciated the opportunity to engage in thoughtful discussions with the Office of Workforce Development and Human Resources Administration on how to bring the City’s new vision to life. Our settlement houses and community centers share the City’s commitment to creating a workforce development system that meets New Yorkers where they are and connects them to the education and skills they need to achieve their goals. We look forward to the release of the one year report and continuing to partner with the city to ensure robust investment in key adult literacy, youth employment and other workforce programs,” said Kevin Douglas, Co-Director of Policy & Advocacy United Neighborhood Houses.

“The New York City Employment and Training Coalition has been encouraged by the ongoing dialogue between the Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development, city agencies and the provider community to help shape the new vision for workforce development in the City.  We look forward to building upon this foundation to ensure adequate funding and effective program design for training, adult basic education and wrap around services for all New Yorkers who need a quality job,” said Mary Ellen Clark, Executive Director, New York City Employment and Training Coalition.

“We look forward to continued reports of the systems-level change as the City transitions its massive system to one that is reoriented to career pathways.  The learnings from this transition won’t just benefit the City – but will have lasting impact on how the State and nation operate workforce programming,” said Melinda Mulawka Mack, Executive Director, New York Association of Training and Employment Professionals.

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