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Services for Youth and Young Adults

Youth Program

The youth program is designed to prepare youth, who face significant barriers to success, for employment and/or post-secondary education through strong linkages between academic and occupational learning, by providing resources and support to overcome those barriers and successfully transition to self-sufficient adulthood. Local communities provide youth activities and services in partnership with IowaWORKS and under the direction of local Workforce Development Boards.


Tutoring, Study Skills training, and dropout prevention and recovery strategies that lead to completion of the requirements for a secondary school diploma or its recognized equivalent.

Alternative secondary school services

Paid and Unpaid work experiences that have academic and occupational education as a component of the work experience, which may include the following types:

  • Summer employment opportunities.
  • Year-round employment opportunities.
  • Pre-apprenticeship programs.
  • Internships and job shadowing.
  • On-the-job training opportunities.

Occupational Skills Training programs that lead to recognized post-secondary credentials that align with in-demand industry sectors or occupations.

Education offered concurrently with workforce preparation activities and training for a specific occupation or occupational cluster.

Leadership Development opportunities, including community service and peer-centered activities encouraging responsibility and other positive social and civic behaviors.

Supportive Services

Adult Mentoring

Follow-up Services for no less than 12 months after the completion of participation, as appropriate.

Comprehensive guidance and counseling which may include drug and alcohol abuse counseling, as well as referrals to counseling, as appropriate to the needs of the individual.

Financial literacy education

Entrepreneurial skills training

Labor Market Information and activities that help youth prepare for, and transition to, post-secondary education and training.  

Activities that help youth prepare for and transition to postsecondary education and training.  


To be eligible, individuals must meet all four of the below criteria:

  1. Between the ages of 14 to 24 years old.
  2. A citizen of the United States or U.S. Territory, a U.S. permanent resident, or an alien/refugee lawfully admitted to the U.S.
  3. Registered with Selective Service if applicable (Males 18 years and older only)
  4. Be an out-of-school youth or an in-school youth


Register on, to have access to all of our online services, including career assessments, skills matching, resume and cover letter creation, and automated job searches.

Call or visit your local IowaWORKS Office to meet with a Career Planner to determine eligibility for the youth program.

For additional questions please fill out our Workforce Services Form.