Youth unemployment is a significant global challenge. According to a recent report by McKinsey & Company, young people worldwide are three times more likely than their parents to be out of work. In the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries, more than one in eight of all 15 to 24 year-olds are NEET (Not in Employment, Education or Training). Moreover, the International Labor Organization estimates that, globally, there are 75 million young people who are unemployed. Paradoxically, many entry-level jobs around the world remain unfulfilled because companies cannot find people with the right skills.
To address this problem, Alcoa Foundation created the Global Internship Program for Unemployed Youth. Alcoa Foundation has committed over $2 million since 2013 to provide workforce readiness training, paid internships with local manufacturers, and career planning and placement for more than 700 unemployed youth (ages 18 to 24) in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Russia, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States. The goal is to equip unemployed youth with the skills and experience to start successful careers in the manufacturing sector.
The program is administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE) on behalf of Alcoa Foundation. To execute the program, Alcoa Foundation and IIE currently partner with five nonprofit organizations in Australia, France, the United Kingdom and the United States with existing job readiness and employment programs that offer both job training and internships with small and medium-sized manufacturing companies in the local community. Each nonprofit organization will receive an average of $100,000 to deploy a paid internship program in the community. In addition, local Alcoa offices will work with partner nonprofit organizations to identify volunteer mentors for the interns.