Job Corps

Comparison of Federal Program With State Youth Training Initiatives Gao ID: HEHS-96-92 March 28, 1996

State or locally established youth-training programs are offered in most states. Although many have characteristics similar to those of the Job Corps program, state and local youth corps programs most closely resemble the Job Corps program. Two such programs--the California Conservation Corps and the Seaborne Conservation Corps in Galveston, Texas--contain all four features that, taken together, characterize the Job Corps: they serve disadvantaged youth, provide basic education, offer vocational training, and provide services in a residential setting. However, even these two programs differ from the Jobs Corps in the ways that they run their programs. For example, the California program does not specifically target the disadvantaged, and Seaborne's vocational training is geared toward a single industry.

GAO found that: (1) while many state and local youth training programs feature, to some extent, some of the Job Corps' basic characteristics, most do not feature all four characteristics; (2) most youth training programs provide disadvantaged youth with basic education; (3) states' residential youth programs generally target specific populations such as youths involved in the court system, disabled youth, or substance abusers; (4) although state and local youth corps programs most closely resemble the Job Corps, few are residential; and (5) the California Conservation Corps and Seaborne Conservation Corps in Galveston, Texas, feature all four Job Corps characteristics, but differ from Job Corps in program operations.

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