Opportunity Works: Back on Track

Program/Intervention: 
Opportunity Works Program - Back on Track Intervention
Implementing Organization: 
Boston Private Industry Council; Capital Workforce Partners; The Administrator of the Tulane Education Fund; Philadelphia Youth Network; Bay Area Community Resources; Planned Parenthood Mar Monte; United Way of King County
Intermediary(s): 
Jobs for the Future, Inc
Summary: 

Opportunity Works was a three-year effort led by Jobs for the Future (JFF) to help young people ages 16 to 24 who are not in school or meaningfully employed access postsecondary and career pathways.

Based on the Back on Track framework, seven cities across the country provided supportive, enhanced preparation and postsecondary/career bridging.

Study Goals:
The study evaluated JFF’s Opportunity Works program and Back on Track model to assess:
  • The impacts of the Back on Track model on the educational and career outcomes of participants.
  • Whether, after completion of the program, participants were less likely to be disconnected from work and education and/or less likely to be looking for work.
Results:
The impact study found that:
  • When pooling the sites together, twice as many Opportunity Works participants enrolled in both postsecondary institutions compared to their matched counterparts.
  • Young men of color enrolled in postsecondary education at even higher rates compared to the comparison group.
  • Program participation was associated with higher postsecondary enrollment at all sites.
  • Program participants were more likely to get a high school credential than individuals in the matched comparison group.
  • Program participants were more likely to apply for an associate degree and to apply to training programs than individuals in the comparison group.

For more information, download the final report and the report brief.

CNCS Program(s): 
Social Innovation Fund
CNCS Focus Area(s): 
Youth Development (SIF)
Age(s) Studied: 
18-25 (Young adult)
Study Type(s): 
Impact
Implementation
Study Design(s): 
Quasi-Experimental (QED)
Level of Evidence: 
Moderate
Evaluator: 
The Urban Institute
Year Published: 
2019
Date Posted Online: 
September 12, 2019
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