U.S. Cities Increase Number of Summer Jobs for Young Adults, but Demand Still Higher Than Supply, New JPMorgan Chase & Co. Report Reveals

U.S. Cities Increase Number of Summer Jobs for Young Adults, but Demand Still Higher Than Supply, New JPMorgan Chase & Co. Report Reveals

More Cities Creating Skills-Based Summer Roles that Align with Future Job Opportunities
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Thursday, February 25, 2016 - 8:00am

CONTENT: Press Release

NEW YORK, February 25, 2016 /3BL Media/ – JPMorgan Chase & Co. today released a report illustrating how a lack of summer jobs is impacting youth unemployment and creating roadblocks to economic mobility for many young people in the United States. Demand for summer employment remains higher than the number of available job opportunities, according to a new survey of 15 U.S. cities. Despite the creation of more summer roles, only about 38 percent of teens and young adults looking for summer jobs were able to find positions through 18 summer employment programs in the 15 cities surveyed over the last two years.

These findings are part of a new report, Expanding Economic Opportunity for Youth through Summer Jobs, which highlights the importance of summer employment opportunities for teens and young adults and the benefits they provide, including workforce readiness, skills development and higher graduation rates. JPMorgan Chase has supported the development of several programs that equip young people with education and training that aligns with the changing needs of businesses. The report, which is based on a survey of Summer Youth Employment Programs (SYEPs) that are supported by JPMorgan Chase, also reveals that the summer employment rate for teens across the U.S. has fallen to 34 percent, a near record low and a 20 percentage point drop since 1995.

“Despite all of the challenges Summer Youth Employment Programs face, we’re seeing a continued commitment from cities to provide young people with greater access to economic opportunity,” said Chauncy Lennon, Head of Workforce Initiatives, JPMorgan Chase. “But we must make it a national priority to close the gap between the demand and supply of summer jobs.”

The Private Sector Increases its Role in Summer Employment

To increase the number of summer job opportunities, cities are taking existing workforce and economic development strategies and discovering innovative ways to meet their goals. As a result, new youth employment initiatives were created in six of the cities that were surveyed. Overall, seven city programs that were surveyed provided more summer opportunities in 2015 than in the prior year.

To meet the growing demand for summer employment and provide diverse work experiences, businesses are forming partnerships with summer jobs programs to increase private sector youth opportunities; the number of private sector worksites increased by 8 percent in 2015.

SYEPs are increasingly interested in expanding the number of partnerships with private sector employers that recognize the benefits for young adults entering the workforce. Detroit tops the list of surveyed cities with the highest increase in the number of private sector worksites offering summer youth employment, adding more than 100 partnerships in 2015. Other cities that reported the largest increases are: Louisville (+66), Milwaukee (+22), St. Louis (+19), Dallas (+14) and San Francisco (+12).

“I believe that talent is equally distributed, but what is not equally distributed is opportunity,” said Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. “We have an enormous number of talented young people in Detroit who have not had the same kinds of opportunities as people in other communities. JPMorgan Chase’s report highlights the need to continue investing in our young people and providing them opportunities through our summer job programs like Grow Detroit's Young Talent, which will employ 8,000 young people this summer.”

“STL Youth Jobs is built on the knowledge that early work experience, especially summer employment, can lead to greater economic opportunity,” said St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay. “JPMorgan Chase shares our commitment to investing in the future workforce of St. Louis, and this report underscores the importance of creating more meaningful summer job opportunities for our young people, particularly those living in our most challenged neighborhoods.”

While youth funding by the U.S. Department of Labor has decreased by 33 percent since 2000, a variety of sources have increased public funding for summer jobs by almost 10 percent between 2014 and 2015. The private sector has increased funding for SYEPs in 2015 by a national average of 4 percent and JPMorgan Chase has committed nearly $6 million over the last two years to support career-targeted opportunities for teens and young adults through SYEPs. The summer jobs programs funded by JPMorgan Chase in 2015 helped to provide over 3,200 youth jobs and work-related opportunities.

Focus: Skills-Based Summer Jobs

Career skill development remains a priority for SYEPs as they continue to create partnerships with the private sector. By 2025, 65 percent of jobs in the U.S. will require some postsecondary education, training or credential. Given these heightened expectations, summer work experience and skills development enable young people to better compete for future jobs.

Of the 18 programs surveyed, 13 programs expanded the skills-based, career-specific or year-round opportunities for youth that can lead to future career options. For example, almost half of the programs work directly with Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs at local school districts to connect summer work to career pathways. In addition, public school districts are working alongside 11 summer jobs programs to connect students to CTE programs.

Additionally, almost half of the SYEPs offer jobs or training connected to specific sectors, such as technology, healthcare and the food and beverage industry. As a result, young people with summer jobs in cities such as Chicago, Louisville, Miami, New York City and St. Louis are performing skills-based work.

Making Progress

While there has been strong growth among SYEPs, cities continue to provide strategies and insights will continue to advance youth employment and expand skill-based and career-specific employment and training opportunities, including:

  • Expanding Private Sector Engagement: Cities and SYEPs must continue to expand partnerships with the private sector by strengthening operating and communications systems.
  • Building Capacity for Skills Development: Cities and SYEPs are making progress in linking summer jobs to technical skills building, training and education, and year-round employment.
  • Expanding Services for Special Youth Populations: Cities continue to prioritize serving special youth populations, including at-risk youth. While some progress has been made, especially increasing services for opportunity youth, most SYEPs do not actively recruit or provide targeted services for youth involved in the court or foster care system or youth with special needs. Programs are making headway expanding services to young men of color (30 percent of SYEP participants).
  • Connecting SYEPs to Local Workforce Systems: Cities are aligning summer jobs programs with local workforce systems through new partnerships and organizational structures.
  • Creating Financial Capability Programs: The incorporation of new interactive technologies, along with the knowledge of sound financial practices, will help to create economic security for these young employees.

About the Report
This JPMorgan Chase report is a qualitative analysis of summer youth employment programs, representing a cross-section of models, within the 15 cities - Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Jacksonville, Jersey City, Louisville, Los Angeles, Miami, Milwaukee, New York City, Oakland, Sacramento, San Francisco, Seattle and St. Louis – funded by JPMorgan Chase in 2015. In conjunction with JPMorgan Chase’s partners, Patti Everitt, Austin Community Foundation/Summer Jobs Partnership and Kisha Bird, Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), the report draws from an array of data gathered through in-depth surveys, individual interviews with program directors, focus groups with participating youth and interviews with employers, partner organizations and program staff.

About JPMorgan Chase & Co.
JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.4 trillion and operations worldwide. The Firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers and small businesses, commercial banking, financial transaction processing, and asset management. A component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, JPMorgan Chase & Co. serves millions of consumers in the United States and many of the world's most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients under its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands. The firm uses its global resources, expertise, insights and scale to address some of the most urgent challenges facing communities around the world including the need for increased economic opportunity. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at www.jpmorganchase.com.