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NYC Small Business Services
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Friday, July 11, 2008

NYC Dept. of Small Business Services Launches NYC Training Guide To Help New Yorkers Make Informed Decisions About Vocational Training

Online directory brings further transparency and accountability to the City’s workforce development initiatives

The New York City Department of Small Business Services today unveiled the NYC Training Guide, an online directory at that will allow New Yorkers using City vouchers for vocational training to make informed course selections. The Guide includes information about nearly 400 training providers and 4,000 occupational skills training courses, and provides prior students’ course completion and job placement rates for courses that received vouchers.

“The NYC Training Guide brings transparency and accountability to our workforce system by publicly holding Training Providers accountable for the quality of their programs and allowing New Yorkers to access data and feedback from other students in order to make informed decisions about vocational training,” said Robert W. Walsh, Commissioner of the Department of Small Business Services. “In addition, Training Providers are now able to better market their courses to appropriate jobseekers and attract candidates that are the best fit for their services.”

The guide is the first comprehensive, online listing of NYC training programs specifically geared towards helping unemployed and working poor New Yorkers.  This initiative is funded by the Mayor’s Center for Economic Opportunity, which works with City agencies to develop and operate evidence-based initiatives to reduce poverty.  The internet-based service will help jobseekers evaluate training programs that promote skills building and career advancement.  The Guide profiles more than 4,000 schools and offers course completion and job training rates for those programs which are eligible to accept vouchers to train New Yorkers for jobs in high-growth fields. Data is listed for all programs which have accepted City vouchers from at least five students since April 2006.

As a result of improved career counseling and the use of report cards to hold Training Providers accountable, the City is maximizing its returns on investment in job training. The number of New Yorkers receiving vouchers who completed their courses rose to 93 percent in 2007 from 79 percent in 2004 and the number of New Yorkers who found employment upon completion of training increased to 59 percent in March 2007 from 50 percent in April 2005.

Vouchers for vocational training are issued at the City’s six Workforce1 Career Centers across all five boroughs, which help New Yorkers find and prepare for employment with free services including job search resource rooms; personalized career counseling; advice on how to interview for a job; assistance creating resumes and cover letters; job placement services; help preparing for a job; career workshops; and GED and ESL classes.

The Center for Economic Opportunity (CEO) was established by Mayor Bloomberg to implement innovative ways to reduce poverty in New York City. Led by Executive Director Veronica White, the CEO works with City agencies to design and implement evidence-based initiatives aimed at poverty reduction. The CEO manages an Innovation Fund through which it provides City agencies annual funding to implement such initiatives and will oversee a rigorous evaluation of each to determine which are successful in demonstrating results towards reducing poverty and increasing self-sufficiency among New Yorkers. Copies of the Center for Economic Opportunity’s Strategy and Implementation Report are available at

Kara Alaimo (SBS) (212) 513-6318

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