Recent News & Blog

Power Huddle graduates thirty-eight young people who move onto education, employment, and job training

INDIANAPOLIS – 26 November 2019 – Today at the Finish Line Boys & Girls Club, 38 young people will be recognized for completing the YES Indy Power Huddle program, a two-week intensive training where individuals learn how they can change their future trajectory as well as a variety of employability skills that will help them take those next steps. This is the largest cohort to have completed the program, co-located at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Indianapolis and at Eastern Star Church, both on the Far Eastside of Indianapolis.

The Far Eastside is one of the five target areas as identified by EmployIndy and the City of Indianapolis as having the highest rates of crime and poverty throughout Indianapolis. In Central Indiana alone there are over 30,000 Opportunity Youth, young adults, ages 16 – 24, who have disengaged from secondary education or graduated but disconnected from the workforce. With the gap in middle skills jobs that currently exist in our workforce ecosystem as identified by DWD, these youth and young adults present an opportunity for our community wellbeing and their personal growth, health and success. To re-engage this audience, EmployIndy has focused on creating a positive trajectory for youth in Marion County, thus launching YES Indy REC in 2018.

YES Indy REC was piloted at the Finish Line Boys & Girls Club as a safe space for young people to interact, play basketball, and meet adults who are willing to mentor them. While this is the forward-facing piece of the YES Indy REC, it goes far beyond that as mentors encourage individuals to partake in the Power Huddle to move from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset.

“We are proud to play a role in changing the lives of young people throughout Marion County,” said Marty Posch, President of the Finish Line Youth Foundation, an organization that has been a strong advocate and supporter of the Power Huddle and YES Indy REC since program inception. “Located just down the street, we have the opportunity to make a difference in our community thus impacting our future workforce and Indianapolis as a whole.”

Twenty-two of the 38 individuals recognized today completed the Power Huddle through the YES Indy CommunityCorps program administered through Groundwork Indy. These young people were enrolled in a nine-week paid work experience during which they also received eighteen hours of socio-emotional trauma informed wellness training and participated in mindset training (Power Huddle).

These activities helped the Opportunity Youth to develop their employability skills by working on community projects to improve community food access, health, aesthetics, safety and facility maintenance supports, while also receiving adult mentoring, career navigation, life coaching, job readiness training, adult education services, alongside trauma informed social and emotional violence prevention counseling.

“These young people are the ones who persisted,” said Rev. Rodney Francis, Senior Director of Opportunity Youth at EmployIndy. “They made the decision to make a change in their life and took the steps to get there. The most difficult piece of engaging Opportunity Youth isn’t just getting them in the door. In the last year we have reached 1508 young people through the YES Indy REC, 147 have signed up for the Power Huddle, and, including this group, only 97 have completed the program. They have to decide for themselves that they want to change.”

After completing the program, the young adults will be enrolled in YES Indy where they are connected to a career navigator who will offer support and guidance as they enroll in education and training or transition into the workforce. Once they are part of YES Indy, other resources are available, such as transportation, financial guidance, temporary housing, re-entry services, counseling, and more.

“This course has helped me view myself as a strong queen,” said Taleiah Gamble, a graduate of Power Huddle cohort nine. “Before I started the Power Huddle, I felt drained and useless until Mr. S, our instructor, explained to me that I should always have a growing mindset and not a fixed mindset. A growing mindset is constantly grasping knowledge and a fixed mindset is basically a locked mindset. I learned that I do not need to settle for less and now I’m preparing to become a Certified Medical Assistant and starting class on January 9th.”

The next Power Huddle cohort will be ten weekdays from December 9 – 19, 10am – noon at the Finish Line Boys & Girls Club. Registration is currently taking place so please direct any interested young people to the Finish Line Boys & Girls Club, Monday – Friday, 10:00am – 2:00pm. To learn more about YES Indy REC and YES Indy programming and resources, visit yesindy317.org.


Posted on April 10th, 2019 in Press Releases Tags: , , ,

A $1M investment from JPMorgan Chase is part of nearly $2M in total funds invested in IPS’ postsecondary readiness and career academies programming

Al Smith, JPMorgan Chase Indiana Chairman and Corye Franklin, Principle of Arsenal Technical High School

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – April 10, 2019 — Today, JPMorgan Chase announced investments totaling $1 million to Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS), EmployIndy and JFF to increase access to work-based learning opportunities for IPS high school students. Alongside local and national leaders, JPMorgan Chase made the announcement at the Arsenal Technical High School STEM Learning Lab.

“Our rapidly-changing economy requires new skills to meet the growing needs of companies across the region,” said Al Smith, chairman of JPMorgan Chase in Indiana. “This public-private collaboration will create economic opportunity and career mobility. It’s an investment in Indianapolis’ most valuable resource ― our vibrant student population that will be better prepared to compete for well-paying careers and bright futures.”

Marie Mackintosh, EmployIndy COO, on the importance of skilling up students

IPS launched new college and career options as part of the new All-Choice High School Model at the start of this academic year. Under the new structure, students choose a high school based on their desired area of study ― there is no restriction on where they live. The restructuring created college and career pathways that help all students graduate on time and achieve one of the district’s three Es — to Enroll in a two- or four-year college or university, Enlist in the armed services or be Employed at a livable wage. Research shows that students are more engaged and successful when robust academic options are combined with rigorous instruction and work-based learning opportunities.

Faith Harrington (Crispus Attucks student), Susan Ford (Trilogy), Jennifer O’Shea (IPS), Marie Mackintosh (EmployIndy), Owen Washburn (JPMorgan Chase)

“Having access to quality work-based learning opportunities will provide IPS students with the employability skills necessary to succeed beyond high school, in whatever path they choose,” said IPS Interim Superintendent Aleesia Johnson. “The generous investment by JPMorgan Chase will support the efforts of IPS and EmployIndy to ensure that all IPS students have access to meaningful work-based learning opportunities, and that employers have the ability to engage with our students — the future of our workforce.”

EmployIndy has been the link between employers and the increasing need to accelerate and enhance IPS postsecondary readiness initiatives since 2017. EmployIndy has also served a critical role in informing the Health Sciences Career Academy design through provision of labor market research for skills mapping; participation on academy advisory boards; development of employability skills curriculum and badging; and the facilitation of experiences on the work-based learning continuum.

This investment will create a sustainable partnership and develop critical infrastructure, engaging employers in a sequence of experiential learning activities across all IPS college and career academies. JFF’s Pathways to Prosperity team will provide direct support and the capacity building needed to accomplish this work.

“The two-year commitment from JPMorgan Chase includes technical assistance from JFF to develop a clear vision, framework and strategic plan for EmployIndy to serve as the work-based learning intermediary in Indianapolis,” said Angela Carr Klitzsch, president and CEO of EmployIndy. “Our work together will establish essential infrastructure for EmployIndy to scale work-based learning in a robust and complex workforce development ecosystem.”

Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett

“This investment in work-based learning is a win for Indianapolis, because it will enhance educational opportunities for students, strengthen our talent pipeline, and enable businesses to directly connect with their future workforce,” said Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett. “Together, we are working to ensure that our young people have clear paths, experiences, and credentials that fit the needs of our modern economy.”

The IPS Education Foundation (IPSEF) collaborates closely with IPS leadership, teachers and staff to ensure that development activities align with IPS strategic priorities. As a mission-driven development organization, IPSEF brings fundraising expertise and capacity, thus allowing district administrators to focus on their core business — leadership in support of excellent teaching and learning. IPSEF will receive the investment and help distribute the funds across the district.

“This investment from JPMorgan Chase will help catalyze the partnership for IPS and EmployIndy to bring this critical work to scale across the district,” said Stephannie Bailey, executive director of the IPS Education Foundation. “As the philanthropic arm to the district, we are grateful and excited to celebrate this major investment in the future of our IPS students, families and staff.”

Susan Ford (Trilogy), Betsy Revell (EmployIndy)

The benefits of the investments were highlighted through a panel discussion at today’s announcement that included a current IPS student, Faith Harrington; employer partner Trilogy Health’s Talent Engagement Support, Susan Ford; EmployIndy Chief Operations Officer, Marie Mackintosh; and IPS Post-Secondary Readiness Officer, Jennifer O’Shea. The discussion was moderated by JPMorgan Chase Vice President f Global Philanthropy, Owen Washburn.

The investment by JPMorgan Chase is part of nearly $2 million awarded to IPS for postsecondary readiness over the last year. Eli Lilly and Company Foundation gave $300,000 in grant funding to support professional development, technology investment and youth employment at IPS’ Advanced Manufacturing, Engineering & Logistics Academy and Construction, Engineering & Design Academy. IU Health awarded $50,000 to support the Health Sciences Academy. Finally, in 2018, Salesforce.org awarded $500,000 to support the Information Technology Academy, future centers at the district’s high schools, and business partnerships.

For more information, contact IPS Communications Manager, Carrie Cline Black, at 317-605-3797.

About JPMorgan Chase & Co.
JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.6 trillion and operations worldwide. The Firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers and small businesses, commercial banking, financial transaction processing and asset management. A component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, JPMorgan Chase & Co. serves millions of customers in the United States and many of the world’s most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients under its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at www.jpmorganchase.com.

About Indianapolis Public Schools
The largest public school district in Indiana, Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) is an agile, innovative educational organization committed to academic excellence built through individualized, relationship-based learning. We empower our students to think critically, creatively and responsibly, to embrace diversity and pursue their dreams with purpose. Though we cover 80 square miles, employ over 5,000 people, and serve over 30,000 students, we are committed to serving individual students with what they need. To learn more about IPS, please visit www.myips.org.

About EmployIndy
EmployIndy guides the local workforce ecosystem and makes strategic investments to remove barriers to quality employment for underserved and underrepresented residents. As the workforce development board for Marion County, guided by 21 business, civic, education, and non-profit community leaders, EmployIndy invests $20 million in public, private and philanthropic funds for both youth and adults annually. Information about EmployIndy is available at www.employindy.org.

About JFF
JFF is a national nonprofit that drives transformation in the American workforce and education systems. For 35 years, JFF has led the way in designing innovative and scalable solutions that create access to economic advancement for all. Launched in 2012, Pathways to Prosperity is a joint initiative of JFF and the Harvard Graduate School of Education that seeks to ensure that many more young people complete high school, attain postsecondary credentials with currency in the labor market, and launch careers while leaving open the prospect of further education. Information about JFF is available at www.jff.org.

About the IPS Education Foundation
The Indianapolis Public Schools Education Foundation (IPSEF) seeks to secure and deploy resources to support Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) students, teachers and administrators across the District. Alignment with IPS strategies and partners drives strategy to secure philanthropic capital to close funding gaps and to fulfill the District’s mission. IPSEF seeks to generate revenue that allows the District to improve organizational effectiveness, drive academic innovation and invest in talented educators. For more information on IPS Education Foundation, please visit http://ipsef.org/.