Signs of Progress Series: District Councils Collaborative Outreach Coordinator Karyssa Jackson

October 30, 2013

The new vitality that’s developing along the Central Corridor comes from something more than the fresh concrete and shiny steel of the Green Line. Communities are transforming themselves — by learning together, coordinating across boundaries and working for impacts that benefit everyone. 
At the Annual Stakeholder event in April, seven representatives of these efforts talked to other community stakeholders about the process and impact of the changes we see unfolding across the corridor. This is the fourth in a series of blogs featuring these signs of opportunity. Watch a short video clip of remarks by District Councils Collaborative Outreach Coordinator Karyssa Jackson, and see below for a summary. 
Karyssa shares an update on the Corridors to Careers project. This pilot project aims to build work-ready communities by ensuring that residents of five target neighborhoods in the Central Corridor are prepared for successful lifelong careers. 
The District Councils Collaborative and Ramsey County have partnered to hire seven “connectors” to share career building resources and information with residents. As of April 2013, the project has been underway for four months. In this time, connectors have reached 300 individuals through more than 25 engagements in addition to one-on-one outreach. Although this is not a job-placement project, 5 individuals have found employment directly through our outreach. 
In addition, 15 individuals have also completed the National Career Readiness Certificate, also known as Work Keys. This tool can help individuals to assess their skills and connect those skills to appropriate career paths. It is a very effective alternative to the traditional methods of demonstrating skill sets to employers, such as degrees.   
Connectors have also identified dozens of barriers that are preventing residents from locating and maintaining employment. They are developing short term solutions to the immediate issues and working to develop recommendations to address systemic issues and barriers that exist in our workforce system.  
For more information, please visit Job Connect MN or the DCC website
Watch for upcoming posts featuring more highlights from the event.