Recent News & Blog

Posted on November 15th, 2018 in Events, Speaking Engagements, Success Story

EmployIndy partners with Indiana Department of Workforce Development (DWD) on several of workforce-ready initiatives. This partnership aims to break down barriers and make it possible for all individuals to receive adult basic education and actively enroll in a variety of training programs in order to further their skill set. At the Indiana Statehouse today, WorkINdiana, one of these aforementioned initiatives, celebrated 6,000 completions and 5,000 certifications in five years.

Speaking at the event was EmployIndy COO Marie Mackintosh, Associate COO of Adult Education with the Department of Workforce Development Marilyn Pitzulo, and Ivy Tech’s Madison Campus Chancellor Molly Dodge. They provided background on WorkINdiana and the progress that has been made to get from where they began to the successes they have had five years later. After this, they passed the mic to three WorkINdiana participants: Brittany Young, Paul Powell, and Sarah White. These individuals shared their personal journeys and talked about where they are now because of the opportunities gained through WorkINdiana.

  • Brittany Young attributes her confidence to the people who helped her along the way. “I developed relationships and gained emotional support all through this program.” As a  2014 WorkINdiana participant from southern Indiana, she completed entry welder training and landed a job at Vehicle Service Group as a Cell Coordinator.
  • Paul Powell, a 2018 participant from Indianapolis, talks about quick results. “It is good to know that [WorkOne Indy] showed up when I needed it.” All within 6 months, he obtained his HSE, CDL-A certification, and started work at Eby-Brown as a CDL driver.
  • Sarah White spoke to the 3 month Medical Assistant training she completed right out of high school in 2018. “It was a jumpstart to my career.” She is currently at Greene County Hospital where she is employed as a certified Clinical Medical Assistant.

WorkINdiana is just one of many ways that EmployIndy is working to skill-up Marion County’s workforce. Recently, EmployIndy was awarded $125,000 of Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) funding from DWD in order to remove barriers for employers, service providers, and job seekers alike. This funding will give service providers the tools they need to knowledgeably serve the adult population and provide opportunities for them to skill-up into the jobs within Indianapolis’ high-demand industries, providing a workforce-ready population for the future of Marion County and local employers.


Posted on October 29th, 2018 in Success Story Tags: ,

Destanie at her childcare job, reading to her young son.

In June of 2018, Destanie was involved in a serious car accident and lost everything due to hospital bills and her lack of income during this period. With a young child, no employment, lack of stable housing, and virtually no support system, Destanie thought she had hit rock-bottom. One day when she was leaving her apartment she met Dian Krueger, a CAFE career and employment coach who was doing community outreach outside of her building. CAFE specifically offers barrier-buster support for individuals who need help reaching their next step, whether that means financing childcare and housing, connecting unemployed residents to job training or counseling, or preventing other barriers to success.

Shortly after meeting Dian and being introduced to CAFE’s education and employment services, Destanie was enrolled in YES Indy, EmployIndy’s Youth Employment System, where she was able to receive assistance and coaching so she could obtain a full-time job. YES Indy providers open doors for opportunity youth, focusing on those located in EmployIndy’s target impact areas, so they can receive barrier-buster support through both career and education guidance.

Not long after joining YES Indy, Destanie was employed at the childcare center where her child was enrolled as part of the Great Families 2020 program. Great Families 2020 is a two-generational approach for quality childcare on the Far Eastside while partnering individuals with a case manager and financial and family supports coaches.

In addition, Destanie secured housing thanks to EmployIndy’s YES Indy Barrier Busting support. These barrier-buster funds provided a security deposit for her housing, connected her to a paying job, and assisted with childcare. EmployIndy’s support of these programs makes it possible for many individuals just like Destanie to take steps to further their education and career by easing life’s financial burdens.

Through partnering with organizations like CAFE, EmployIndy is able to further the workforce and increase economic development in Indianapolis. Currently, in addition to being employed at the childcare center, Destanie is enrolled as a part-time student at Ivy Tech Community College where she is pursuing her Associates Degree in Physical Therapy, furthering her previously earned CNA Certification. This opens doors for her to pursue other careers in the healthcare industry and allows her to stand apart from her peers as she moves from a job, to a better job, to a career.

Posted on October 4th, 2018 in Success Story Tags:

In its pilot year, Job Ready Indy (JRI) has shown to be a flexible resource to many Marion County organizations seeking to provide soft skills training. In fact, in the ten months since its announcement, twenty-two organizations have become certified JRI providers with nearly ninety fully certified trainers. Even though providers are all targeting 16-24-year-olds, their approaches to implementing the JRI curriculum differ with their organizational structure. One such organization is Indianapolis Lighthouse Charter – South (ILCS), located near Southeastern Ave. and Emerson Ave.

An early adopter of the JRI curriculum, ILCS incorporated it into their Lighthouse Internships and Field Experiences (LIFE). LIFE seeks to help scholars become confident in their post-secondary pursuits by providing hands-on experience in high school. ILCS proudly partners with over thirty-five Indianapolis businesses to ensure that twice a month, every eleventh and twelfth grade student attends an off campus internship experience. Most employer partners host multiple scholars and several are hosting for their second year. For the handful of partner employers who are not able to host LIFE scholars, they help prepare sophomores by highlighting upcoming LIFE experiences in speaking opportunities. At graduation a LIFE scholar will have accumulated nearly 300 hours of authentic work experience at area businesses.  The businesses provide a wide range of experiences such as: child care, music, activism, health sciences, military, education, cosmetology, veterinary sciences, and non-profit development.

This model aligns with EmployIndy’s E^7 concepts for preparing young adults for the workforce: expose, empower, explore, engage, educate, experience, and employ. As area businesses to expose young adults to their industry and provide experience through internships, they are positioning themselves to have a pipeline of talent to employ in the future.

Now in its second year, ILCS’ LIFE program currently has a total of 100 scholars (forty-nine seniors, fifty-one juniors) learning employability skills and exploring possible career fields here in Indy. ILCS’ LIFE scholars engage in Job Ready Indy curriculum to further develop their understanding of self and how they can best function in a professional work environment. ILCS wove the curriculum into their school culture displaying the badges earned by each junior and senior in the hallways, encouraging younger grades about future opportunities. To date, seniors have had the opportunity to earn the Self-Management, Social Skills and Workplace Skills badges. Juniors, just starting out in the program, completed the Self-Management badge in September. In order to earn the badge, scholars must complete each unit in full, pass a quiz and demonstrate mastery in an advisor administered “badge in practice” test. This process allows the scholar to demonstrate both their knowledge and ability to implement each skill.

Click to see overview of the Job Ready Indy curriculum.

Job Ready Indy, a collaboration with the Mayor Hogsett’s Office and the Indy Chamber, is designed to be flexible and adaptable to existing programs. With badges covering six different sections of competencies, providers can choose to offer one, six, or some combination of badges using their own approved curriculum, free curriculum from EmployIndy, or a mix. By incorporating Job Ready Indy into their existing program, ILCS has provided greater impact for their participants and helped them experience the real-life application of important job skills.

In the words of one ILCS scholar, “I really like the curriculum because I feel like it is easy to understand and applies to my internship placement. I really like discussing each of the skills with my classmates and teachers and I feel like it really prepared me for my internship better than last year, because I actually know what my mentor expects of me as an intern.  I was surprised by how much I liked the curriculum, but also how challenging it was. There are a lot of terms and habits of being a good employee that I thought I knew, but didn’t until I was taught. I get excited about earning my badges because I know that when I’m done, employers will be able to see it online and I know that I’ll be a better intern and can possibly get a job offer after high school.”

Interested in learning more about job ready indy? Contact us!