Connecting Chicago


Marie Trzupek Lynch, Skills for Chicagoland's Future


Oct 23, 2018

Skills for Chicagoland’s Future creates demand-driven solutions to connect Chicago employers with qualified unemployed or underemployed talent. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Chicago unemployment rate is 3.8 percent, but some communities still face double digit unemployment. At the same time, employers increasingly report that they are having difficulty finding qualified workers due to the tightening job market. Skills has placed more than 5,500 Chicagoland job seekers into jobs since the organization launched in 2012, with its impact concentrated on those communities with the highest unemployment rates. On October 5, Skills announced a three-year strategic plan with a goal to have placed 9,000 job seekers by the end of 2020. In December 2012, Skills launched a new initiative focused on youth unemployment. “Beyond the Diploma” provides out-of-work and out-of-school youth ages 18-26 with a job, a clear pathway to career advancement, mentoring support and the opportunity to pursue a post-secondary degree or certification through City Colleges of Chicago. Thus far, Walgreens, CDW, Freedman Seating, Rush University Medical Center, McDonald’s, AT&T and Hyatt Hotels have launched Beyond the Diploma programs. Unemployed and underemployed Cook County residents can apply for jobs at

Hosted by: Paul Lisnek Produced by: Greater Chicago Newsmakers Team
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