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First Delaware Class graduates from Youth Employment Program

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Wilmington, Del. – Governor Markell gave the keynote address at the graduation ceremony of the first class of young adults to complete a new employment training program, Generation.

Wilmington was selected earlier this year as one of the pilot cities for Generation, a program of McKinsey Social Initiative that targets young workers, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds. Together with a range of local partners, including employers, nonprofits and Delaware Technical Community College,

Generation’s first classes provide Wilmington young adults accelerated training as certified nursing assistants (CNAs). Those who complete the program, pass a certification test, and interview successfully are guaranteed jobs with Delaware employers. Building on the success of the CNA program in Wilmington, Generation plans to expand into other fast-growing professions in the coming year.

In partnership with Delaware Tech, Generation currently offers an eight-week boot camp CNA course geared toward low-income, 18-29 year olds, who are currently unemployed or underemployed. The program’s recruitment partners include Jobs for Delaware Graduates, Goodwill, and Career Team.

“Generation is pleased to be able to congratulate the first class of graduates in Wilmington as they start on their careers in health care,” said Dr. Mona Mourshed, Executive Director of Generation. “Governor Markell and many wonderful local organizations have been great partners in launching the program. We’re looking forward to expanding Generation in Delaware in the future to reach many more young adults.”

Seven students graduated this week, all planning to work with one of the first employer partners, Saint Francis Healthcare and Cadia Rehabilitation. A second cohort of eight additional students, a size consistent with state regulations on classroom teacher-student ratios, has already begun classes.

Program expansion will enable Generation to reach many more young Delawareans. Generation plans to move beyond healthcare to offer programs targeted in other sectors.

Generation will be recruiting additional classes to start later in the year, with recruitment currently open for the next Wilmington CNA class, scheduled to begin in early October. Interested young people or employers can contact generationwilmington@mckinseysocialinitiative.org or visit the Generation website at www.generationinitiative.org.

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