Enabling Young Urban Adults to Realize Their Potential

November 16, 2015Alec Green

“All any of us want in life is a fair shot and an opportunity to go prove ourselves.”

- Jay Banfield, Founding Executive Director, YearUp Bay Area

Year Up's mission is to close the Opportunity Divide by providing low-income young adults with the skills, experience, and support that will empower them to reach their potential through professional careers and higher education.

According to recent estimates, more than 6 million young adults have not progressed past a high school diploma and have limited access to the workforce. Under its current structure, Year Up is only able to serve 2,500 of these urban young adults annually, enabling them to develop job-specific skills and move onto a stable career path. 

In order to reach more young adults, Year Up is expanding into new cities and fostering new partnerships with employers across the country. But as Jay Banfield explains, the success of Year Up’s program hinges on having the right people in place to serve as mentors and educators: “Finding the right people and relentlessly developing them is the biggest limiter to our growth.”

In 2010, the Cornerstone OnDemand Foundation welcomed Year Up as a strategic partner which included a donation of Cornerstone’s talent management software to recruit, onboard, train, and develop Year Up’s hundreds of employees and volunteers. Recently, we had the opportunity to visit the Year Up offices in San Francisco and hear from Jay why closing the opportunity divide is so important to him, how Year Up seeks to scale its programs, and why he believes talent management is such a critical piece of his strategic plan:

The Cornerstone OnDemand Foundation brings in new strategic partners in our three areas of focus – disaster relief, education, and workforce development – on an annual basis. If your nonprofit could benefit from our technology grants or other capacity-building services, please contact us to learn more.

About Alec Green

As Chief Marketing Evangelist, Alec Green is responsible for developing the overall marketing plan and strategy for the Foundation, executing all outbound communications, increasing visibility of the Foundation’s programs, and building engagement with our partners... more


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