Business leaders and educators form a long-term partnership to create a training program that prepares youth for jobs in Orange County’s growth industries.
In 2006, the Santa Ana Chamber of Commerce partnered with the Santa Ana Unified School District to develop a training curriculum that provides students, many of whom were a part of the growing immigrant population in the city, with job training in the six growth sectors of the Santa Ana region. This unique partnership is narrowing the skills gap between the local workforce and local industries, providing college as well as career preparedness programs, and acclimating to shifting labor markets. Now a nonprofit organization, High School Inc. (HSI) Academies Foundation is training local students in automotive, transportation and logistics; culinary arts and hospitality; engineering; global business; healthcare; and new media sectors. The 2020-2021 HSI program supported 1,633 students, resulting in a 98% average graduation rate among students in the 12th grade, 1,012 donated industry volunteer hours, 521 industry certifications, 129 students participating in competitions, and 60 completed internships. Among program participants, 70% are the first in their family to receive a high school diploma, 80% come from families where English is not spoken at home, and 96% of students are the first in their family to either enroll in college or be hired in an industry trade. To learn more about the program read here.
Photo credit: High School Inc. Academies Foundation