Labor Department Funds to Help Northern Alaska’s At-Risk
Young Alaskans in the Fairbanks North Star Borough and Northern Alaska
having trouble completing high school or finding or keeping a job will
benefit from a new wave of federal training and employment funds now
available through the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development.
The department released a request for proposals on October 20 with a
deadline of December 1, 2000 for completed applications to provide in and
out of school youth employment, education, and job training services.
Approximately $225,000 is available for services to youth (ages 14-21) in
the Fairbanks North Star Borough and approximately $60,000 for youth in the
remainder of the Interior and the North Slope Borough. "This funding
will help young people in Northern Alaska who have either dropped out of
high school, have gotten a diploma and are looking for work, or are still in
high school and need additional assistance in order to be successful in
school," Labor Commissioner Ed Flanagan said. These grants are part of
a national and statewide focus for designing and reinforcing year-round
community youth services and resources leading to academic and job success.
"We want to prepare young people for the day when they’ll be
supporting themselves and possibly a family," added Flanagan. Services
usually funded include academic, occupational, vocational, work readiness,
and life skills training to give youth the right credentials to become
valuable members of Alaska’s workforce and economy. Agencies awarded youth
grants in the past include the Literacy Council of Alaska. Youth ages 14-21
were hired to tutor younger elementary aged children in reading and math
during the summer months, and periodically throughout the school year.
Former tutors have gone on to become teachers and social workers.
Traditionally, federal grant money was separately available for summer
youth programs, but under the new Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (public
law 105-220) all youth grant money is combined for annual distribution and
linked to academic and occupational outcomes. The goal is to create
educational and job incentives to help youth become self-sufficient in their
The Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development is an equal
opportunity employer. Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request
to individuals with disabilities.