The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (Workforce Investment Act).
Receive job training from the federal government program known as The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. This resource was previously known as the Workforce Investment Act (WIA). This national program can help the displaced, unemployed and low income individuals find employment and access training for a new job. It is a nationwide effort that is often administered by your local community action agency, social service office, or other non-profits in your county or town.
The United States Department of Labor created the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act to help the unemployed access the resources they need to gain and improve their skills and manage their careers. Another objective of the program is to help U.S. companies find skilled workers by placing applicants with an employer who has an open position.
Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act services
The services offered by WIOA as well as your community action agency or other non-profit that administer the program are diverse, flexible, and can be customized to meet the applicants exact needs. Employment Counselors from WIOA may provide the following training programs, grants and services to clients, and almost all resources are free to qualified clients.
Skills Upgrading, Job Training and Educational Services can be offered. The unemployed can get assistance in developing skills such as computer literacy, ESOL, GED preparation, math, basic reading, and math skills.
Job Readiness Activities and Job Search Services - Counselors will work one on one with clients to help them find a job, prepare their application, and practice for the interview process. Work with a counselor to improve your interviewing skills, get help creating and editing a resume, and access a computer or phone bank to search for jobs.
Financial Support Services - Some income qualified clients may be able to qualify for funds or grants to pay for childcare and expenses such as transportation while in a job training program.
Occupational Skills Training is also funded by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. This can provide people with a certificate or credential in one of over 800 training programs or unique skills sets. Improve your computer skills, learn new software products, prepare for an office or manufacturing job, and much more.
Temporary Jobs - Some people may be placed with a local employer for on the job training. This will allow participants the ability to earn an income while they learn new job skills, gain experience, and build a relationship with a potential future employer.
Career Planning and Employment Strategies - Get information on high demand occupations, career interest assessment, and job placement follow-up services.
On-the-Job Training - This is training that is provided to a paid participant by an employer that takes part in the WIOA program. This keeps the person engaged in productive work, in a position that provides them with the skills and knowledge that is needed and that is essential to the full and adequate performance of the job. A number of on the job training programs are provided under a contract with an employer in the private, non-profit, or public sector.
WIA Dislocated Worker Services - Is provided to those who have been terminated or laid off from employment. Assistance can also be provided to those who have received notification of an upcoming layoff or termination and if they are doubtful to return to work in his/her previous occupation or industry.
Career centers - The WIOA program pays for facilities known as One-Stop Career Centers. These locations are located in most major counties and towns across the country. The sites provide the unemployed or people looking to gain new skills a wide variety of tools and resources. Clients can attend job training programs, vocational training, free computer classes, GED instruction and much more. Click here.
Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Youth Program - Services are provided to eligible youth (aged 14 - 21) and can assist them in achieving employment and academic success. The following resources are offered.
- Summer jobs and employment opportunities that are associated with occupational and academic learning.
- Study skills training, tutoring, grants and instruction to help them complete secondary school, including dropout prevention strategies.
- Internships and job shadowing, which can be either paid or unpaid work experiences.
- Occupational skill training, computer literacy, and career counseling.
Some other services offered by WIA and/or your local community action agency may be providing any book to someone who needs material for their training or education; grants for tuition; commuting assistance; individual training accounts; and reimbursement of fees.
Apply for WIOA job training programs
Unfortunately not everyone will be eligible for assistance, and various conditions need to be met in order to access the various Workforce Investment WIOA programs. The specifics may vary by state and also by the non-profit agency funding.
In general the qualifications needed include the following. You may be qualified for job training and other employment resources from WIA if you meet one or more of the following.
- You are unemployed due to any of a number of reasons, including a recent lay off or job termination.
- If you are unable to obtain employment through core services and if it has been determined that you need more intensive job training or services in order to obtain employment.
- The low income can qualify for the job training programs too. Individuals who are on Food Stamps or TANF can get help, or people who meet other certain low income guidelines.
- Even if you are currently employed, but if your income is below the self sufficiency guidelines as established by your state or county, then you may qualify. Check in with the counselor from WIA for the most recent guidelines.
- Others who may qualify include the homeless, individuals with a disability, or displaced homemakers.
To apply or for more information, contact your local community action agency for specifics or referrals. Or select your state below for additional details on career centers, the WIOA program, and other local job training services.