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North Carolina’s youth and young adults are a crucial part of the state’s workforce, and it’s important that they be given the tools they need to advance their education and careers. Youth services provide young adults people with opportunities to prepare for and advance their education and careers.

How It Works

Traditional employment and young adult development programs teach participants how to maintain positive relationships with responsible adults and peers, explore opportunities for community service, and develop leadership skills. As part of the program, each young person will assess their skills and participate in a program that’s designed to address their individual needs.

Young adult services may include the following opportunities:

  • Tutoring and study skills training
  • Alternative secondary school
  • Summer employment opportunities
  • Paid and unpaid work experiences, including internships and job shadowing
  • Occupational skill training
  • Leadership development
  • Supportive services
  • Adult mentoring
  • Follow-up services
  • Comprehensive guidance and counseling
  • Financial literacy education
  • Entrepreneurial skills training
  • Labor market and employment information
  • Activities to help prepare for training and education

How to Qualify

Participants must be in one of two categories for young people to be eligible to receive services: in-school or out-of-school.  

In-school youth must be attending school, be between 14-21 years old, low-income and have one or more of the following characteristics:

  • Basic skills deficient
  • An English learner
  • Homeless/runaway/out-of-home placement/foster care/aged out of foster care
  • An offender
  • Pregnant or parenting
  • An individual with a disability
  • Require additional assistance to complete an educational program or to secure or hold employment.

Out-of-school youth must not be attending any school, be between 16-24 years old and have one or more of the following characteristics:

  • A school dropout
  • Within age of compulsory school attendance, but has not attended school for at least the most recent complete school year calendar quarter
  • Recipient of a secondary school diploma or equivalent who is low-income and basic skills deficient or an English language learner
  • Subject to the juvenile or adult justice system
  • Homeless/runaway/foster care/aged out of foster care/out-of-home placement
  • Pregnant or parenting
  • An individual with a disability
  • A low-income individual who requires additional assistance to enter or complete an educational program or to secure or hold employment

The state’s Workforce Development Boards work with schools, businesses, community organizations, and other local partners to provide support and funding for local youth programs.

NCWorks Online

The state’s official job-search portal, NCWorks Online allows youth to search for jobs, find local training opportunities, and learn about industries and occupations to prepare for their careers. The system also provides information on programs and opportunities for youth in their communities.

How to Apply

Contact your local Workforce Development Board for information on local youth services.

Youth can use NCWorks Online to search for jobs and training opportunities in their areas. Registration is free.