Benchmarks of Success Issue 37, June/July 2022

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Monthly Newsletter  -  Issue 37,  June/July 2022

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Young people who have the opportunity to explore career options, engage in positive work-based learning experiences, and connect with occupational training opportunities have a big step up in the process of successfully transitioning to the adult work world. This month’s newsletter shines a light on a range of programs available through Maryland's workforce system to help young people start their careers on the right foot.

Employ Prince George's (EPG's) Youth Services program helps Ebony launch a successful career in digital marketing.

Ebony is a 24-year-old mother who enrolled in Employ Prince George’s (EPG’s) Youth Services program in the fall of 2021. EPG’s Youth Services staff worked with Ebony to help her match her passion for digital marketing and social media management with a work experience opportunity at Sincerely Wilma, a Maryland-based small business that handcrafts an assortment of sweet and savory pancake and waffle batters. Ebony’s work ethic and performance during an internship with the organization landed her a contractual position with the company as their Social Media Manager. Although she thrived in her new role, the owner was unfortunately not able to retain her services beyond a few months. This didn’t stop Ebony from pursuing her dreams though. She continued to meet regularly with EPG’s Youth Services staff for weeks to coordinate the appropriate next steps.

While waiting to begin a small business certification at Prince Georges Community College, Ebony worked with one of EPG’s Youth Business Consultants, who helped her learn how to effectively engage with employers. Ebony applied her newly acquired skills during one of EPG’s quarterly job fairs, scheduling three employment interviews. She made it through three rounds of interviews with the Maier & Warner Public Relations Firm for a role as the organization’s Digital Marketing Manager. She must have made a good impression, because the company hired her, and she is now making over $50,000 annually! The EPG team celebrates her success and was happy to be a part of her story.

Directory for Maryland Youth Employment Services

Title I of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) governs a comprehensive youth employment program designed to serve eligible youth, ages 14-24, who face barriers to education, training, and employment. WIOA Youth Program funding focuses primarily on out-of-school youth (OSY), but Local Areas may choose to use up to 25% of their youth funding to cover in-school youth (ISY) activities. About half of the state’s 13 Local Areas contract with providers to implement their youth employment services. The other half oversee their own youth services programs.

In addition to WIOA OSY and ISY programs, Local Areas may also use non-WIOA funding to offer summer youth employment programs. The Directory below lists WIOA Youth programs and summer employment programs for each Local Area.

The information that appears in the following table does not necessarily reflect all of the youth programs available in the communities.


Quick Resources

Benchmarks of Success Resource Page

Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Resource Page

Maryland’s State Workforce Plan



Download and share the Benchmarks of Success poster, rack card, and two-sided flyer!

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Local Area

Provider(s) for OOS/ISY

Summer Youth Employment Program

Local Area Youth Services Contact

Anne Arundel County

Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation


Youth and Young Adults Manager - Lisa Dunaway

Baltimore City

Bon Secours Community Works - Youth Employment and Entrepreneurship Program

Career Academy

Civic Works - YouthBuild

Healthcare Careers Alliance

Pressley Ridge Transition-Age Program


Youth Program Manager - Joe Smith

Baltimore County

Community College of Baltimore County - LEAP Program

Baltimore County

Department of Economic and Workforce Development

2022 Summer Youth Employment Program


Senior Project Specialist –

Beatrice Tripps

Frederick County

Family Partnership of Frederick County

Frederick County Workforce Services Department Summer Jobs Program

Manager of Youth Programs and Talent Pipeline - Kara Fritz

Lower Shore

(Somerset, Wicomico and Worcester Counties)


Lower Shore Workforce Alliance (LSWA)

LSWA Summer Youth Employment

Youth Program Manager - Sherri Sigrist

Carroll County

Carroll County Workforce Development (CCWD)

CCWD Summer Youth Employment Program

Youth Program Specialist - Dominique Evans

Howard County

Howard Community College

Howard County Office of Workforce Development Summer Youth Employment Program

Youth Program Coordinator - Jermira Sarratt

Montgomery County

Grant Associates

Worksource Montgomery Young Adult Opportunity Program

Deputy Director of Administrative Services Nate’ Gordon

Prince George's County


Employ Prince George’s (EPG) Knowledge Equals Youth Success

Eckerd Connects Youth Services

 Adams and Associates

ADC Management Solutions

Director, Youth Services

Jennifer Ricks


Southern Maryland

(Calvert, Charles, and Saint Mary’s Counties)

Tri-County Council of Southern MarylandYouth Services

Summer Youth Connection

Youth Services Manager - Greg Holtz


(Cecil and Harford Counties)

Eckerd Connects Youth Services

Harford Community College

Susquehanna Workforce Network Summer Youth Employment Program

Youth and Project Coordinator - Karen Reed

Upper Shore

(Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s,

and Talbot Counties)

Upper Shore Network

Maryland Summer Connection

Director of Programs - Joanne Gannon

Western Maryland

(Washington, Allegany and Garrett Counties)

Western Maryland Consortium

Summer Youth Connection

Victoria Shaffer


Workforce Partners

Maryland Department of Labor                                                                  Maryland Department of Human Services

Maryland State Department of Education                                                Governor's Workforce Development Board

Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development                            Maryland Workforce Association

Did You Know...?

Maryland's Latest Workforce Development Updates

  • Employment Services for Youth with Disabilities -

    Youth employment service providers sometimes encounter youth facing disability challenges that require specialized support. In such cases, the Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) program may be the right option. The Pre-ETS program, which is administered by the Maryland State Department of Education’s Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS), provides an early start at job exploration for students with disabilities ages 14 - 21 to help them successfully transition from school to postsecondary education or employment. The services available through the Pre-ETS program include:

    • Job exploration counseling
    • Work-based learning experiences, which may include in-school or after school opportunities, experiences outside of the traditional school setting, and/or internships
    • Counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or post-secondary educational programs
    • Workplace readiness training to develop social skills and independent living

    Students with disabilities who are interested in participating in one or more of the Pre-ETS services should contact their local DORS office directly or can be referred by school personnel.

    For additional information regarding the DORS or to refer for services, please visit the website.

  • What Are the Core Characteristics of Generation Z? - 

    How much do you know about the latest generation to enter the workforce? Check out this article, which was posted by the Annie E. Casey Foundation on that organization's website in 2021. Gen-er-a-tion Z has emerged as a population increasingly worthy of attention, especially now as its older members enter young adulthood. Born after 1995, Generation Z‑ers made up one tenth of the 2020 electorate; and while they share a number of characteristics with Millennials, their formative years have been shaped by a drastically different world, resulting in key differences in attitudes, tendencies and outlook. Statistics compiled by the Pew Research Center paint a clear picture. Here’s what we know: Read more…

  • The June Virtual Training Institute was a Big Success!  

    June 6 through 9, 2022 marked the sixth year that Labor’s Division of Workforce Development and Adult Learning (DWDAL) has hosted the Virtual Training Institute (VTI), a semi-annual professional development conference for adult educators. A total of 629 participants attended the June event, at which they could choose from 17 sessions. Kudos to Adult Education Program Specialist Ahu Moser, who organized and managed another great event. Stay tuned for the next VTI this December!

    VTI content from previous years is available on the VTI Archives page.

  • Meet DWDAL's New Americans Initiative Coordinator Joana Winningham - 

    Joana Winningham knows what it feels like to visit an American Job Center (AJC) in search of career guidance to take the right next step in her career. During a job search in 2017, she attended a job fair at the Professional Outplacement Assistance Center (POAC), where she discovered an employment opportunity with DWDAL as a Spanish speaking facilitator for reemployment workshops. She helped to build the state’s reemployment program in the years that followed, assisting countless individuals across the state access career services and successfully transition to new jobs. Now stationed at Labor’s headquarters on Eutaw Street in Baltimore City, Joana misses working side-by-side with the POAC colleagues who became family, but she looks forward to the opportunities she will have as New Americans Initiative Coordinator to ensure that immigrants and English Language Learners are fully integrated into the state’s workforce system. 

    To learn more about Maryland’s New Americans Initiative, visit the website. You can email Joana at

  • From the desk of the Chief Learning Officer for Maryland's Workforce System, John Feaster III -

    Summertime has arrived! Many of us take time during this season to relax and recharge, and professional development (PD) tends to take a backseat to vacations and family time. This makes summer a perfect time to take a step back and regroup. Take stock of your recent career growth activities and develop (or refine) your plan for moving forward in the fall, when a plethora of conferences, convenings, and credit and non-credit college course options roll out. Sign up early for PD opportunities aligned with your goals, as some are offered on a first-come, first-served basis.

    Remember to explore the ever-expanding array of free PD options available online as well. Many prestigious universities offer “Massive Open Online Courses” (MOOCs) that span a wide range of disciplines. Check out the MOOCs List for a comprehensive listing of free online courses. Podcasts and YouTube can also be great sources for free training on software, soft skills, life skills, technology, and everything in between!

    So get out there and enjoy the sun – but always keep an eye open for opportunities to build your career!

    Upcoming Training Opportunities and Conferences: 

    The release of the next module in the Benchmarks of Success eLearning series is right around the corner!

    A new module on the Jobs for Veterans State Grant program will be coming in August, so keep your eye on your inbox! 

    CSBG Training and Technical Assistance Assessment 

    The Office of Community Services (OCS) is requesting input from the Community Action Network to help inform the future of Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) training and technical assistance (T/TA). OCS will use this information to inform its T/TA Learning Agenda. All CSBG staff within an agency are encouraged to complete the survey to account for all T/TA needs (administrative, programmatic, and fiscal). The last day to submit survey responses is July 8, 2022. Click here to access the survey and for questions, contact 

    The Region 3 Regional Performance and Information Consortium (”RPIC ”) and Maryland

    Community Action Partnership (MCAP) to Hold Premier Regional Convening 

    Join the Community Action Associations in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia to showcase community initiatives. During the convening, Region III will feature four community action agencies, as they document their impact and share how their initiative increased human capacity and transformed their communities. The Convening will be held virtually on July 13, 2022 from 10 AM to 3 PM. To learn more about RPIC and to register, click here.


Benchmarks of Success Newsletters


Benchmarks of Success Committee Updates

Committee Chairs welcome questions from newsletter readers regarding the work in which their groups are involved! To be connected with a committee's leadership team, feel free to contact the Communications Committee at

All committees are currently meeting virtually.

  • The Executive Steering Committee is composed of the agency leaders of the partner agencies who meet periodically to provide the WIOA Alignment Group with high-level guidance. You can learn more about the Executive Steering Committee’s ongoing activities here.
  • The WIOA Alignment Group is composed of the department and division-level leaders of partner agencies who meet on a monthly basis to collaboratively address issues, plan joint efforts, make recommendations to the Executive Steering Committee, and manage and guide the activities of the Benchmarks of Success committees. The WIOA Alignment Group typically meets on the last Monday of each month. The most recent meeting was held on June 27, 2022. The next meeting is scheduled for July 25, 2022. You can learn more about the WIOA Alignment Group’s ongoing activities here.
  • The Data and Dashboard Committee is comprised of representatives from partner agencies who possess subject matter expertise in program-based performance requirements and data collection methodologies and tools. The Committee typically meets on a quarterly basis to develop a consistent, sustainable system all workforce partners can use to measure, analyze, display, and apply Benchmarks data to continuously improve the quality and effectiveness of services. The Committee’s most recent meeting was held jointly with the Policy Committee on June 23, 2022. The group's next meeting will also be held jointly with the Policy Committee on July 28, 2022. You can learn more about the Data and Dashboard Committee’s ongoing activities here.
  • The Communications Committee is comprised of representatives from partner agencies who possess subject matter expertise in programs and communications methods and tools. The Committee meets on a monthly basis to foster the integration of Maryland’s workforce system by broadly promoting the activities of the Benchmarks of Success committees and the services and resources of partner agencies and programs. The Benchmarks of Success newsletter is the committee's main deliverable. The newsletter serves as a central forum targeting frontline service providers, where partners can share information on important developments that impact the system. The Committee held its most recent meeting on June 23, 2022. The group's next meeting is scheduled for August 11, 2022. You can learn more about the Communications Committee’s ongoing activities here.
  • The Policy Committee is comprised of representatives from partner agencies who possess subject matter expertise in workforce system policy issues. The Committee meets on a monthly basis to research policy issues and produces an annual Policy Recommendations Report. The recommendations included in the Report help to guide system priorities and initiatives. The Committee's most recent meeting was held jointly with the Data and Dashboard Committee on June 23, 2022. The next meeting of the Committee is a follow up meeting meeting scheduled with the Data and Dashboard Committee on July 28, 2022. You can learn more about the Policy Committee’s ongoing activities here.
  • The Professional Development and Technical Assistance Committee works to advance a unified professional development program that helps all partner programs maximize access to and use of skills and credentialing and life management skills, eliminate barriers to employment through the use of supportive services, and strengthen and enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the workforce system. The Committee typically meets on the third Wednesday of each month. The group held its most recent meeting on June 21, 2022 and has the next meeting scheduled for August 16, 2022. You can learn more about the Professional Development and Technical Assistance Committee’s activities here.


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