Employment Services for Youth
Young Californians are looking for their first job–an important step in building skills and experiences for the future. Many starting out don’t know how or where to begin the job hunt, and have limited education and experience to show on a resume. A first job gives young people exposure to the workplace and helps them build financial skills to use throughout their lives.
In partnership with the America’s Job Centers of CaliforniaSM (AJCC), we can help you prepare for success in the classroom and to enter the workforce. You can receive work-readiness and life skills that will help you achieve your career goals.
Do Your Homework
Check out our Toolkit for Job Seekers to find tools and resources that can help you in your job search, explore career options, and review training or apprenticeship opportunities.
You’ll find tools like:
Follow These Steps
- Build a Strong Resume: Use the Resume Builder feature in CalJOBS to build your resume online. You can create multiple resumes tailored to specific jobs.
- Develop Your Interview Skills: Learn your top strengths and get in-person interview practice. Find your local AJCC .
- Gain the Experience That Fits Your Career Goals: Visit your local AJCC to learn about apprenticeships, internships, and vocational training available in your area.
- Build Your Network: Attend local job fairs, workshops, and events to grow your network.
See If You Qualify for Employment Services
If you are between the ages of 14-24 years old and meet certain eligibility requirements, you may qualify for the following services, available through your local America’s Job Center of California:
- Tutoring, study skills training, and instruction leading to completion of secondary school
- Alternative school services
- Paid and unpaid work experience (such as internships, apprenticeships, and job shadowing)
- Occupational skills training
- Leadership development
- Supportive services
- Guidance counseling
- Follow-up services
Youth Employment Opportunity Program (YEOP)
The Youth Employment Opportunity Program (YEOP) provides special services to at-risk youth between the ages of 15-25 to achieve their educational and career goals. Peer advisors with similar experiences will work with you as mentors and career coaches. They can provide referrals to support services, workshops, employment preparation, and other training and community outreach efforts.
- Fact Sheet: Youth Employment Opportunity Program (DE 8714w) (PDF)
- YEOP Services and Eligibility Criteria
- YEOP Services by County
California’s online resource for connecting employers and job seekers.
The site provides labor restrictions for teenagers, tips to prevent workplace injuries and other useful information regarding federal and state labor laws.
Job Corps is the nation’s largest and most comprehensive residential education and job training program for at-risk youth, ages 16-24 providing over a million disadvantaged young people with academic, vocational, and social skills training.
The AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) is a full-time residential program for men and women, ages 18-24, that strengthens communities while developing leaders through direct, team-based national and community service.
Candidates for apprenticeship programs must be at least 16 years of age (18 for hazardous occupations). Programs last between one and six years. At the end of the instruction period, apprentices receive an Apprenticeship Completion Certificate which is a recognized credential for the selected occupation.
New, Emerging Workforce
Did you know?
- There are 2.1 million workers between the ages of 16 and 24 which accounts for 11.4 percent of California’s 18.9 million labor workforce.
- The unemployment rate for younger workers increased by 10 percentage points from March 2020 to March 2021 reflecting 19.3 percent.
- Among the jobs held by California’s younger workers, one out of every three are employed in the food service and drinking places industry sector. The other top industries include: retail trade; transportation and warehousing; educational services; and professional and technical services.
Review Job Services for Youth (YouTube) to learn how youth are successfully finding jobs with our partnership with the AJCC network:
Career and College Readiness
Students: Start exploring career options, whether you are in high school, have graduated, have a vocational certificate, or have a two-year or four-year college degree.
Career Advisors: Find key resources for career counselors, academic advisors, and other workforce professionals.
California Career Zone: A career exploration and planning system designed especially for students.
California Department of Education: Supports local educational agencies, grades 9-12, to improve student achievement and transition to postsecondary education and careers.
High School Equivalency Test: The official site for the General Educational Development (GED) test.
Bureau of Labor Statistics: The nation’s premier source for career information. It features hundreds of occupations and describes what they do, the work environment, how to get into that occupation, the pay, and more. Each profile also includes employment projections for the 2010–20 decade.
Free Application for Federal Student Aid: Get help filling out the FAFSA® form. Browse common questions and learn how to fill out the FAFSA form.