Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA)
Adult Employment Program

The WIOA Adult Program provides employment and training services for unemployed, underemployed and low-income Ramsey County residents aged 18 years and older. This federally-funded program gives priority to residents facing barriers to obtaining and sustaining employment. Participants aim to improve their lives by finding new careers offering livable wages, often in high-demand fields like transportation, healthcare, manufacturing, construction, administration and information technology. The WIOA adult program helps residents utilize their talents and skills effectively.
The program aims to narrow employment gaps among residents by providing employment services internally and partnering with community organizations to offer a variety of needs-based employment services. These services include job search support, individualized career plan development, career counseling, support services, competency-oriented training opportunities and career development services, aiming for employment at family-sustaining wages.

Participant summary demographics

The WIOA Adult Program participants' demographic details including race/ethnicity, gender and age group, offers insight into the groups served. This helps understand the program's impact on participants who historically face economic disparities. 
The program served 153 participants, with 63% being Black or African American, 24% White, 8% Asian American, 1% Multi-Race,          1% American Indian and 1% Alaskan Native. In addition, 3% of the partcipants served did not identify their gender.
The WIOA Adult program provides career counseling services to pivot careers and/or access training services for participants ages 18 years and older to update skills that align with the evolving job market.
In the 2023 program year, the gender distribution among the 153 participants was 82 femals and 70 males participating. There was also one individual who chose not to identify their gender. This near-equal participation of women and men in the program highlights its accessibility across gender lines.

Participant detailed demographics

Gender and Race
Black or African American men are the most served group in the WIOA Adult program. 
Age and Race
Black or African American participants ages 30-39 are the most active users of the WIOA adult program.

Program performance

Program performance data shows the effectiveness of the WIOA Adult program in assisting diverse residents facing multiple employment barriers. 
Career counseling, training consultation and access to funds for training are among the core  services provided by the WIOA Adult program. Participants who access training may increase their education level and document their learning through transcripts, training milestones or skills progressions.  Skill improvements allow participants to advance their career often resulting in higher levels of pay. Participants who obtain such credentials as an industry recognized certificate or a secondary school diploma, have a greater likelihood of obtaining employment at higher wages than non-credentialed participants. 
Participants trained by race
A key component of this program is consultations and trainings.In total,74 participants have leveraged these opportunities to enhance their skills and qualifications.
The data shows a diverse range of participants with 47 Black or African American individuals, reflecting the highest participation. Followed by 12 White participants ,9 Asian, 1 individual of multi-race, and 5 participants who chose not to identify their race.
Participants earned credentials by race
Obtaining credentials, such as industry-recognized certificates or secondary school diplomas, is a crucial step for participants in securing employment that offers higher wages.
The data indicates a total of 37 individuals achieving this milestone. The breakdown by race shows there were 20 Black or African American participants, 7 White participants,7 Asian participants, 3 participants who did not identify their race also earned credentials.
Measurable skills gain by race
The measurable skills gain focuses on the advancements in skills among participants.
Outcomes for measurable skills gain by race often follow the same trends as outcomes for training and credential completion. To complete a credential, it is common a participant will need to take an exam or provide proof or documentation of their knowledge of the skill. In the WIOA Adult program, this is considered a measurable skills gain.
A total of 42 participants gained measurable skills, with 25 Black or African American participants, 8 White participants, 8 Asian participants, 1participant who chose not identify their race.
Participants employed by race
The primary goal of the WIOA Adult program is to help participants find gainful employment.
A total of 35 participants found employment during the  2023 program year across all races. The largest group was 17 Black or African American participants, followed by 14 White participants and 4 Asian participants.
Participants median wage by gender and race
Hourly wage rates are collected when a participant becomes employed. The chart below shows the median wages of participants who entered employment during the 2023 program year by gender and race.

The future of the WIOA program

Through its WIOA Adult Program and with community workforce partners, Workforce Solutions is working to bridge the gaps in employment. The WIOA Adult Program will continue its outreach and dedication to populations experiencing disparate employment outcomes.

Additional resources

We encourage spreading the word to those experiencing economic and employment disparities in your community. Here are some additional informational resources:
Learn more about the programs and services offered by Workforce Solutions.