Fifteen percent of Americans between the ages of 16 and 24 aren’t in school and they are not working, according to an Opportunity Nation coalition study released today. Indiana is right on par with the national average.
The percentage of quote – idle youth in Indiana exactly mirrors the national number at just less than 15 percent. Indiana Youth Institute CEO Bill Stanczykiewicz says young people with only a high school diploma struggle to find jobs.
“This certainly a distressing statistic, these young people have written for themselves an economic death sentence,” he says.
Indiana is working on a number of initiatives to help Hoosiers find work such as the Indiana Career council, a program designed to train Hoosiers in fields where there is a high demand for workers.
The Excell Centre, which operates across the state, works to help adults find careers. Todd Strong is the lead teacher with Excell in Howard County, where the percentage of youth out of work and not in school is nearly 19.5 percent.
He says the problem is less of a skills gap and more of an aspiration gap.
“Impoverished families tend to have impoverished ideas and knowledge of hope to navigate the high cost of university so the lack of knowledge of financial institutions, because of all what poverty does there probably not very familiar with banks probably not very familiar with loan or have never had the credit to have loans,” Strong says.
Indiana’s percentage of idle youth has increased nearly a full percentage point since 2012.