Launched in early 2020, Job Skills for New Careers is a collaborative initiative focused on helping hard-working adults gain the skills they need to qualify for better-paying, in-demand careers.

Participants come from all over suburban Eastern Jackson County, looking for resources to help them build financial stability for themselves and their families. The key to the program's success is providing comprehensive wrap-around services in addition to high-quality training. These important services allow people to navigate beyond life's barriers and achieve their career goals.

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Our Partners and Their Expertise

Job Skills for New Careers is a collaboration with four key organizations: Community Services League, Mid-Continent Public Library, KC Scholars, and the University of Central Missouri. This initiative uses each organization's unique expertise and assets to offer industry-recognized trainings and certifications in fields that pay living wages and are proven to be in high demand in the region. By working together, we aim to improve successful completion rates by offering a wide variety of readily available solutions to some of the most common barriers to adult learning. Along with the core partners listed below, our workgroup consists of members throughout the area, including Independence EDC, Lee's Summit EDC, Mid-America Regional Council, and Mid-Continent Public Library,

CSL Logo

CSL currently provides job skills training and wraparound support services through New Skills. The program includes wrap-around support services that are critical to participant success. Tuition-paid workforce training, personalized skills assessment, financial coaching, income support, and employment counseling, and more are available through this well-known community leader. Expertise in enrolling participants, managing support service delivery, and tracking program outcomes made CSL a natural fit for this collaboration team.

Here are just some of the training programs available: CDL-A Transportation, Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA), Certified Medication Technician, Customer Service Specialist, Phlebotomy Technician, Medical Interpreter Coach (Spanish bilingual), Bookkeeping and Accounting, Welding, AND MORE!

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KC Scholars Logo

KC Scholars’ newest opportunity, Great Jobs KC, is tuition assistance for approved training programs that lead to careers with salaries between $45,000 to $85,000. Great Jobs KC pays for short-term career training programs for individuals aged 17 and up in construction, healthcare, manufacturing, or information technology. KC Scholars received a $50 million grant from The Kauffman Foundation to provide this adult-learning tuition assistance, and they have lofty goals for participation and completion rates.

KC Scholars works with adults of all ages to access essential skills assessments, mentorship opportunities, and career opportunities. KC Scholars aims to create sustainable career pathways that will increase shared prosperity and increase household incomes for underrepresented communities. KC Scholars works with Job Skills for New Careers partners as well as numerous nonprofits throughout the metro to provide support services to their students. Having supports in place that reduce or remove barriers ensures that nothing gets in the way of people completing their program and achieving their goals.

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Mid-Continent offers extensive online education resources, as well as numerous convenient locations throughout Eastern Jackson County. The library's education resources include an online high school diploma program for participants needing to complete high school to move forward in their career training. Library branches serve as convenient locations to offer Job Skills for New Careers information and enrollment sessions. Mid-Continent can also provide children's programming at the same time as these informational sessions, preventing childcare from becoming a barrier for parents interested in attending.

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UCM Logo

UCM currently offers a broad array of technical job training opportunities and has existing relationships with many area employers. Additionally, students who qualify can receive funding through the Full Employment Council for training through UCM. UCM offers a variety of adult training opportunities in healthcare, IT, business, legal, and manufacturing for careers such as a medical coding & billing specialist, pharmacy technician, Java developer, paralegal, electrical technician, phlebotomist, and more. UCM partners closely with CLS to ensure UCM students have all they need to be successful.

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Fundholder Support

Truman Heartland Community Foundation fundholders directly support this community-focused initiative. In 2020, 42 fundholders contributed $120,000 to support Job Skills for New Careers. In 2021, 45 fundholders increased their support to $125,000. In 2022, even with the stock market in flux, 38 fundholders graciously contributed $202,000 to ensure wrap-around services continue to be made available to our suburban Eastern Jackson, Cass, and Lafayette County friends and neighbors. Donations to Job Skills for New Careers can be made online or by requesting a grant from your DAF.

Examples of Wrap Around Services

Donations to the Job Skills for New Careers initiative could provide tuition for a cohort of students or offer other life-changing supports such as utility or rent assistance, transportation vouchers, financial and employment coaching, grocery and gas cards, and so much more.