Site Update: Milwaukee, Wisconsin


By: Tyler Leighton, 2017-2018 Work First Fellow


Tyler is a Work First Fellow located at the America Works office in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. With this position, he has held a variety of responsibilities, including helping to design and set up America Works’ local Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) program services, establishing and running a new American Job Center, serving as a WIOA Career Planner and program liaison, and conducting research on the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).


The WIOA program and the Job Center are designed to offer a comprehensive array of career services, such as job placement assistance, access to job search and resume development resources, job readiness workshops, career planning and guidance, financial assistance for trainings that lead to recognized credentials, financial assistance for supportive services, on-site rapid response informational sessions for those affected by mass layoffs/permanent shutdowns, and ongoing case management to link participants to needed resources. Ultimately, the goal of the WIOA program and the Job Center is to successfully help clients attain and retain employment that creates opportunity for self-sufficient earnings. Specialized workshops and informational sessions offered at the Job Center include a Resume Development workshop, an Interviewing with Confidence Workshop, and a Selling Your Strengths (SYS) informational session to complement the SYS self-assessment. Through these sessions, clients can get helpful feedback on their resumes and learn how to successfully sell themselves during interviews with prospective employers.


Additionally, Tyler conducts WIOA orientations and Rapid Response presentations that provide information about WIOA services and initiate registration and intake for interested participants. Clients have found the workshops and information sessions to be very helpful, not least by helping to restore hope and confidence during times of career and employment uncertainty.


Moving forward, Tyler is excited to continue working to strengthen and expand the WIOA program and provide a seamless delivery of career services and ultimately transition clients into self-sufficient employment. Additionally, he looks forward to continuing his research on the EITC to determine how it is used in practice and the role it plays in the effort to promote gainful employment in the labor force.