NEW ORLEANS – Today, Mayor Mitch Landrieu and City Officials celebrated the graduation of the seventeenth cohort of the City’s job training program, STRIVE NOLA. Mayor Landrieu also recognized the successes of past STRIVE NOLA graduates who have benefitted from the program.
“In 2014, we created the Network for Economic Opportunity to give the people of New Orleans access to real job opportunities. Through the STRIVE NOLA program, we have been able to keep this commitment,” said Mayor Mitch Landrieu. “Through this work, we are creating pathways to prosperity for the people of New Orleans, especially our African American men.”
Hosted at the New Orleans Jazz Market, the City’s Network for Economic Opportunity graduated 11 STRIVE NOLA participants. Since the program’s launch in 2015, STRIVE NOLA has graduated 312 participants.
Additionally, Mayor Landrieu recognized 4 former participants who have used STRIVE NOLA’s resources and tools to achieve success after graduation. The 4 graduates recognized included Cohort 1 graduate Matthew Causey, Cohort 2 graduates Kenneth Baptiste and Quincy Hayes and Cohort 5 graduate Tonyell Toliver.
- Matthew Causey is currently employed with the Apple Bus Company as a School Bus Driver with plans to start his own trucking business.
- Kenneth Baptiste is now working as a laborer for Gibbs Construction and is respected for his high level of performance.
- Quincy Hayes is currently employed as a Brewer with Big Easy Bucha. Receiving a promotion from Production Assistant within 6 months, Quincy is now the first African American kombucha tea brewer in the United States.
- Tonyell Toliver is now working with the STRIVE NOLA program as a case manager using her experiences in cohort 5 to encourage participants.
STRIVE NOLA Cohort 5 Graduate Tonyell Toliver said, “Before STRIVE NOLA, I couldn’t find a job. STRIVE NOLA helped me to gain employment and put me on a path to success and achieving my dreams. Because of my experience and the tools I gained, I am now able to give back to this program in a way that I never imagined.”
Additionally, Mayor Landrieu announced STRIVE NOLA’s latest program, STRIVE Fresh Start. This program will support adults 25 and older released from incarceration within the last six months or under supervision. The program provides participants with engaged enrollment, intensive case management, individualized mapping, job readiness training and career pathways services. Additionally, participants will get access to legal services, addiction assistance, mental health treatment and any others services to support successful reintegration into society.
STRIVE Fresh Start is now enrolling participants to begin in January 2018 with the 18th cohort of STRIVE NOLA. Those interested are encouraged to visit the STRIVE Fresh Start office located at 1340 Poydras St., Suite 100, from 9 a.m. – noon and 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. or call (504) 658-4201.
“We are grateful for our partners who remain committed to the work of creating opportunities for our residents. Together, we continue to change the lives of disadvantaged job seekers across New Orleans,” said Senior Advisor for Economic Opportunity and Executive Director of the Network for Economic Opportunity Ashleigh Gardere. “I am proud of the work of Cohort 17 and look forward to hearing great things.”
STRIVE NOLA is in line with Mayor Landrieu’s Economic Opportunity Strategy—a comprehensive effort to connect disadvantaged jobseekers and businesses to new opportunities by working to ensure that every resident can take part in the city’s economic growth through partnerships with local training providers, social service agencies and community advocates.
STRIVE NOLA prepares and connects local jobseekers, specifically African-American males, to career pathways through local anchor institutions. During the four-week job readiness training program, participants arrive to work daily dressed professionally from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.
The STRIVE employment model ensures that every client is not only ready to find a job, but also ready to keep it through five components: CORE Attitudinal and Job Readiness, Skills Training, Workforce Case Management, Job Placement, and Job Retention.
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