Friday, May 01, 2015

Avoid Riots. Address Poverty, Jobs

Yesterday, I attended a Summer Employment Summit hosted by JPMorganChase, who has made a $250 million commitment to closing the skills gap. I encourage you to visit their web site, and download the "Building Skills Through Summer Jobs" publication.

Among the three recommendations in this report were 1) Strengthen Infrastructure and Connections among Programs; and 2) Deepen Private Sector involvement.

If you've followed this blog, or click into some of the tabs on the left, you'll see that their recommendations are what I've been focusing on for the past 20 years.
This graphic is from a Total Quality Mentoring (TQM) chart I created in the 1990s to show how volunteers from different industries should be part of tutor/mentor programs in every high poverty neighborhood. Such programs depend on proactive support from the business community, using their own advertising and talent to draw volunteers into programs and help them stay involved for multiple years.

I've been writing about the skills gap since the mid 2000s. Here's a recent article. To get business strategically involved I created a study guide, and encourage companies to think about how volunteer involvement strengthens their current workforce, while building a future workforce and customer base.

Mentoring was mentioned over, and over in yesterday's meeting as a valuable support for youth, and one leader talked about workforce development as something that should be starting in elementary school, as this "mentoring to careers" graphic emphasizes.

I've hosted a Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference in Chicago every six months with a goal of bring people together to share ideas, build relationships and draw attention to tutor/mentor programs all over the Chicago region. The next is a week from today, Friday, May 8 and seats are still available.

This graphic show the new book by Robert Putham, titled "Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis". I wrote about it here. If you're concerned about the Opportunity Gap, Poverty, Race Relations, Education or Workforce Development make the Tutor/Mentor Conference one of the meeting places on your annual agenda. Make this blog and other information on the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC web library part of your regular reading.

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