Workforce Success Story Submitted By:
Baltimore Mayor's Office of Employment Development

Meet James

Workforce Challenge

After graduating from high school in 2011 James lost his way. He fell into a rough patch and wasted a year of doing nothing but hanging out. He felt lost and unmotivated.

In 2012 James's daughter was born and he realized he had to do something with his life.

Workforce Solution

After the birth of his daughter, James worked various jobs and moved to Columbia, MD. And things were going well but then he and his family moved back to Baltimore but he couldn't seem to get ahead.

James heard about the Youth Build Program, operated by Civic Works and funded through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act youth grant managed by the Mayor's Office of Employment Development. James attended an information session at Baltimore City College High School, applied for the popular program and was accepted in March 2016. He applied three times before he as finally accepted. After his interview, he was referred to a Mental Toughness Training. "That experience changed my life", James said. "It opened my mind to a different way.

Outcomes & Benefits

James is now employed by Cities for All Ages, a short-term apprenticeship program operated by Civic Works. James learned how to work with drywall and gained carpentry, painting and tile replacement skills. He has received several certifications including OSHA 10a Sherwin Williams HomeWork Painters Training and a nationally-recognized Home Builders Institute credential from the National Association of Homebuilders.
James dreams of one day building a house from the ground up.

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