Workfirst Program: Career Development
Contact: Molly Onkka
Department of Commerce
P.O. Box 42525
Olympia, Washington 98504-2525
Participation: The Career Development Program expects to serve approximately 1,500 participants between July 1, 2013 – June 30, 2014.
Who is Served: Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) recipients.
Program Description: The Career Development program provides long-term (up to 12 months) of unpaid work experience to complement a participant’s educational pathway. Commerce’s local contractor-partners help place participants in unpaid positions that reinforce specific skills, training, knowledge, and experience necessary to obtain employment in the participant’s chosen career field.
Program History: Since the implementation of WorkFirst in 1997, the state has provided services to help participants search for jobs and enter the labor market. Most have been successful; however, some people need additional assistance to secure permanent employment. The Career Development Program was created to provide students a means to obtain experience in their field while they are completing their education.
Outcome Measures: Participant engagement, job enrollment, education enrollment and completion, and unsubsidized job placement.
Funding and Regional Division: The Department of Commerce contracts with 21 community-based organizations located throughout Washington State to provide service delivery.
State Funding: None.
Federal Funding: $307,000 (July 1, 2012-June 30, 2013).
Statutory Authority: The Deficit Reduction Act of 2005.