State Officials Invest $1M in Expansion of Free Job Training for Youth

By the Office of Sen. Monique Limón

Senator Monique Limón (D-Santa Barbara), Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin (D-Thousand Oaks), and Assemblymember Steve Bennett (D-Ventura) presented two checks Friday with a total of $1 million dollar to support the Youth Apprenticeship Readiness Accelerator Program in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties.

 “I am grateful to present $1 million to the California Police Activities League to fund The Youth Apprenticeship Readiness Accelerator Program  (YARA),” said Senator Monique Limón. “YARA will not only provide youth with lasting skills but also create pathways for entry into good careers.”

In an effort to eliminate employment barriers for Oxnard’s under-resourced youth, the California Police Activities League (PAL) has collaborated with LiUNA Local 585 to create a pre-apprenticeship program to prepare local youth for a career building important infrastructure in our communities.

“As a high school teacher I saw firsthand how valuable both adult mentors and skills training are to developing a youth’s confidence and sense of community,” said Assemblymember Bennet. 

“Apprenticeships sit at the nexus of education and industry to prepare our students for the future. It was a pleasure to support Senator Limón and Assemblymember Bennett in securing funding for this program. We can never go wrong when we invest in our youth,” said Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin. 

“As a community, we can change the trajectory of our youth and provide them with skills to secure great jobs that allow their families to live and thrive in Oxnard,” said Mayor John C. Zaragoza. “With the support of Senator Limón, today’s $1M investment in the Youth Apprenticeship Readiness Accelerator program will ignite the opportunity to reinvest in our local workforce and improve the lives of working families.”

The new “Youth Apprenticeship Readiness Accelerator” (YARA) will use PAL’s established relationships with Oxnard youth to introduce them to free job training opportunities that will provide them with a nationally recognized industry credential that will facilitate their employment in the construction industry and renewable energy jobs. 

Monique Limón represents the 19th Senate District, which includes Santa Barbara, Ventura, Goleta, Carpinteria, Ojai, Santa Paula, Fillmore, Buellton, Solvang, Summerland, Isla Vista, Montecito and parts of Oxnard. She currently serves as the Chair of the Senate Committee on Banking and Financial Institution and the Select Committee on the Nonprofit Sector. 


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  1. Nothing will change for disadvantaged youth until in school they can achieve proficient reading and math in our public schools. “provide them with a nationally recognized industry credential that will facilitate their employment in the construction industry and renewable energy jobs.” Kids were already being told how to vote and now they are telling them where they need to work?
    Frankly, this isn’t much money, it’s a political ad to keep people checking the box.
    Kids are leaving high school without the skills in reading and math they needed to be gainfully employed or go to college and think for themselves. The best way to support students is to vote against endorsed school board candidates. The opposition is focused on foundational education, not politics wake up people!

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