Category: Careers

Washington, DC - After the worst economic crisis of our lifetimes, the United States is in the midst of the longest streak of private-sector job growth in our history, with more than 14 million new jobs created during the past 70 months. But for too many young people, getting a first job—a crucial step in starting their career—is challenging. One of the main criteria employers screen for in the hiring process is work experience.

revious experience allows potential employers to call references who can vouch for a candidate and assess what someone can do based on past accomplishments. Additionally, many of the skills employers value most can only be learned on the job. Once a young person gets their first job, it is much easier to get the next one. 

In his State of the Union Address, the President made clear that our goal is a growing economy that works better for everybody. The President’s FY 2017 Budget includes nearly $6 billion in new funding to help more than 1 million young people gain the work experience, skills, and networks that come from having a first job. Today, the White House and the Departments of Labor and Education announced the details of that plan, including nearly doubling last year’s budget request for supporting young people who are out of school and work. Major investments of this plan include: 

The President is also calling on businesses to take action to give young Americans with limited resumes a better shot in the hiring process by providing internships, training, mentoring, and job interviews to young people who are not in school or working. With more than five million jobs open today—near the highest levels on record—developing the workforce of the future will be critical for businesses to grow, compete for new markets, and innovate. 

Budget Proposals to Help More Young Americans Start Their Careers 

When a young person struggles to get their first job, it can have a lasting negative impact on her lifetime income as well as her motivation, pride, and self-esteem. It is also a missed opportunity for the economy as a whole. A 2012 study found that people who endure a spell of unemployment between the ages of 16 and 24 earn $400,000 less over their careers than those who do not. Moreover, they estimate the lifetime cost to taxpayers of the 6.7 million youth who were neither in school nor in work was around $1.6 trillion. The President’s Budget proposals help address these challenges, including with: 

A New $5.5 Billion Proposal to Open Doors to a First Job 

A New $200 Million Proposal to Develop & Expand Youth Apprenticeship Programs 

New Actions Using Existing Resources 

Broader Proposed Investments in Innovative Training that Lead to In-Demand Jobs 

The 21st century American worker faces an increasingly complex and dynamic job market. Globalization, automation, and technological innovation are driving rapid changes in available jobs and demanded skills. The President is proposing a plan to ensure that our education and training systems do more to help workers keep pace as the labor market evolves. 

Building on President Obama’s Record of Progress for Young Americans