Creating a Path for Youth to Really Good Jobs

Opportunity youth are young adults between the ages 16 and 24 who are disconnected from school and/or work. There are close to 9,000 opportunity youth in Denver alone. They represent a huge opportunity to fill our workforce pipeline when they are provided with the right training and support. By 2020, 74 percent of our jobs in Colorado will require some post-secondary credentials. When you consider that today roughly 45 percent of Coloradans have a two-year degree or higher, it’s easy to see that in order for Colorado to maintain its workforce competitive advantage, we need to find solutions to effectively grow our own workforce.

Through the Denver Opportunity Youth Initiative (DOYI) nonprofit, government and business organizations are partnering to create a pipeline for opportunity youth that begins with securing support services like housing and affordable child care and extends to education and training opportunities, work experience and eventually job placement.

How can your business get involved?

We need businesses committed to developing our workforce and matching the right talent to the right job. We won’t be successful in this effort without partnership from the business community to hire young adults into a path to careers through work experiences, internships or training.

Check out this guide from LinkedIn to get you started: The Ultimate Opportunity Youth Hiring Toolbox, Denver Edition.

For more information or to get involved, contact Lorena Marquez Zimmer, talent pipeline director, at 303-620-8064 or