Program Creates Gateway to Employers in Douglas

Douglas Economic Development Youth
Career Awareness & Promotion
All
PROGRAM OVERVIEW

The Douglas Economic Development Youth introduces graduating seniors who do not have an identified college, military, or career plan to current job openings at local industries at the time of their graduation. The nine-day program is held days following graduation. It allows youth to shadow many of the openings while also teaching industry-requested competencies such as effective communication skills, review of hiring forms, and the importance of building and maintaining a professional reputation at work. Participants also obtain an OSHA-10 certification and an overview of forklift safety.

PROGRAM IMPACT
  • 90% of participants graduate, and 92% are offered employment upon graduation
  • 78% are still employed six months later.
  • Employers report having fewer “no shows” or resignations without sufficient notice from the program’s graduates, which helps them with workforce planning.
INNOVATION

While students are taught the basics of interviewing and how to complete hiring documents such as the I-9 and W-4, they are also taught how to decline a job offer and how to resign to keep all options open as they figure out their career path.

PARTNERS
  • Douglas County Economic Development Authority
  • Douglas County School System
  • United Way of Greater Atlanta
  • WorkSource Atlanta Regional
  • The Bridge Academy
  • West Georgia Technical College
LESSONS LEARNED

Program content must be industry-led and developed through regular feedback from the industry to assess their needs.

“We try to invest in the youth’s long- range success. We spend less time on resume writing and interview skills and more time on teaching the things employers tell us they need, such as effective communication skills.” 
– BREEZY STRATON, Vice President, Elevate Douglas Economic Partnership

When Workforce Works is an opportunity to tell and highlight successful workforce programs, projects, and initiatives from the MAIP Partner network. These aren’t just any stories about workforce programs, but stories of programs that really get it right – putting industry first, engaging career seekers, and developing deep partnerships – the workforce “secret sauce”.