The Higher Education Coordinating Commission awarded Northwest Oregon Works a grant through the Oregon Youth Employment Program (OYEP) in 2022. These funds enable NOW to support youth across healthcare, manufacturing, and maritime sectors in our service area by covering costs of tuition, materials, and equipment to youth in short-term certificate programs, as well as providing short-term wages for internships and cooperative work experiences.
Eligible youth are those ages 14-24 who are enrolled or seeking to enroll in training, programs, or work experience within these industry areas and are available between July 1, 2022, and June 30, 2023. OYEP funds also provide limited wraparound support for assistance with the basic, immediate, and logistical needs of students in the course of their education and training.
Why Does it Matter?
- To help students who have stopped attending school or students who have stopped making progress toward high school goals.
- The grant covers the cost of GED and/or High school expenses, along with the costs of basic needs.
- A highlight of the grant is the incentives for the youth that help motivate and reward them when academic goals are met!
- We have $500 in incentives per student to help them succeed!
- Students earn visa gift cards as they catch up on their academic goals.
- For HS students $50 per credit is completed.
- For GED students $100 per official GED test completed – Plus an additional $100 after all four are completed.
- The students can set personal education goals and receive a visa gift card. Example of a personal goal: attending 2 weeks of school without missing a day.
- In addition, we have an additional $500 per student to help with cost of schooling & needs of the student. Examples: paying an electric bill, gift cards for clothes, helping pay rent, gas cards.
In 2020, NOW launched the Youth Reengagement Council in response to being awarded a grant by the Oregon Youth Development Division to provide services to youth in need of support to earn a high school diploma or GED. The Council is comprised of education and community partners who help inform needs, guide program implementation, and leverage resources. Reengagement services are provided in all five counties both as part of WIOA youth services and YDD services. NOW employs Student Success Coaches who are housed in the community and work directly with local school districts, Clatsop Community College, Tillamook Bay Community College, WorkSource Oregon, and others.
As an awardee NOW became part of The Oregon Youth Reengagement Network, bringing together local re-engagement efforts including schools, community-based organizations, community colleges, local workforce development boards, and other entities working collaboratively to reconnect disengaged youth and support students at risk of disconnection. Grant recipients are required to provide specific Reengagement Services, verify eligible participants, and track the individual educational progress of program participants.