Let’s invest in a successful workforce

Generation's Martha Laboissiere and Candace Moody, vice president, communications at Generation partner CareerSource Northeast Florida, discuss their program in Jacksonville.

Across the country, we see workers — especially young people — struggling to find work.

Yet employers say that they can’t find job candidates with the skills they need. Jacksonville is no different.

Although the regional unemployment rate is less than 5 percent, underemployment (defined as people not doing work that makes full use of their skills and abilities) is twice that rate.

Experts describe Millennials as the least engaged generation in the workplace, and 60 percent of them report being open to leaving their jobs in the next year.

Coming off of the Trump Administration’s recent “workforce development week,” it’s a good time to focus on effective programs that can close the skills gap and help young workers succeed on the job.

Through our collective experience, we’ve learned what works. CareerSource Northeast Florida has been a constant presence in Jacksonville for more than 20 years.

Two years ago, CareerSource and Generation, a global youth employment organization with programs in nearly 50 cities across five countries, partnered to launch an IT program that just graduated its fifth class of Jacksonville students.

Results have been strong, with 85 percent of the class graduating and more than 80 percent of those employed within 30 days.

Read the full story at The Florida Times-Union’s Jacksonville.com website