Supporting Opportunity Youth on Postsecondary Pathways: Lessons from Two States

Mar 01, 2015
  • Description

Out of 38.9 million Americans who fall into the 16-24 age range, approximately 6.7 million are Opportunity Youth--youth neither in school nor working--who face more pronounced barriers to success. This report shows how programs and policies in two states, Connecticut and Michigan, are responding to the need for postsecondary pathways, especially for this most vulnerable population. American Youth Policy Forum (AYPF) defined Opportunity Youth and their needs in both states, and surveyed the landscape of programs and policies that connect them to postsecondary opportunities. Interviews with local service providers, state agency staff, advocacy organizations, non-profits, and others provide documentation of the range of supports available to Opportunity Youth. AYPF's study of Opportunity Youth in Connecticut and Michigan provides the basis for recommendations of proven methods and structures shown to help youth fulfill their potential at a postsecondary level.