2020 Program Report: U LEAD

The U LEAD program provides eligible young people aged 14-24 with employment and training services.  Every milestone in the lives of a young person is recognized as a step toward future success. In partnership with contracted vendors, Workforce Solutions offers U LEAD participants a wide range of services including job readiness, employment, college and career exploration, and paid work experience, giving them opportunities for a better future. 

Program year (Federal): April 1, 2020 – March 31, 2021
Program year (State): July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021
2020 program budget: $1,281,305

In 2020, Workforce Solutions provided $252,490 in wages to Ramsey County’s young adults through work experiences.

Top 5 youth work experience providers

Cookie Cart | High School for Recording Arts | MN Trades Academy | Ramsey County Library | Sanneh Foundation

Training for a career in Emergency Medical Services 

EMS Through a partnership with the Saint Paul Fire Department and Century College, Workforce Solutions supported 18 adults through the Saint Paul Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Academy, an intensive, tuition-free emergency medical technician (EMT) certification and firefighter awareness program designed for low-income, women and underrepresented populations. In addition to the training, each participant received career counseling and a stipend to allow them to fully dedicate themselves to the program. When disrupted by the pandemic, the training was quickly transitioned to a hybrid model of online and socially distanced classroom delivery so the students could finish and move into these in-demand occupations. Several of the graduates were hired as EMTs in the community and began working during the pandemic.  

Student Support Kits: A holistic approach to helping students succeed

The COVID-19 pandemic created unique challenges for college students. To help students who might not have been able to continue their education due to financial barriers, Workforce Solutions used CARES funds to create Student Support Kits in partnership with Century CollegeSaint Paul College and Metro State University.

Each school received 1,500 kits containing gift cards to the school bookstore, school supplies, Metro Transit or gas cards to help with transportation costs, and a Target card to purchase other school supplies.  Because many school libraries were either closed or had limited hours, the need for home internet was even more critical. Through a partnership with PCs For People, hot spot internet devices were also provided to students who did not have reliable internet at home.