Oakland, Calif., is the home of one of the nation’s leading green economy advocacy organizations, Green For All. The city is also home to the Cypress Mandela Training Center. The facility provides a 16-week training program for low-income individuals in the area. These students can now begin training for a career in a green collar industry.

The Oakland Green Jobs Corps Partnership is a collaboration between Laney College, Cypress Mandela Construction Training Program, and Growth Sector Inc. The partnership, which was forged in the fall of 2008, takes a four-stage approach. The first stage begins with outreach efforts and then ends with a college placement assessment for individuals recruited into the program.

Stage two provides students with basic skills training, GED preparation, drug and alcohol counseling (if needed) and other supportive services. Laney College works with students during the third stage of the program. Students will learn about green construction and earn community college credits at the same time. The final stage of the partnership program is paid, on-the-job training and apprenticeship. 

This program is a comprehensive example of how individuals in low-income communities can prepare to be a part of the green collar economy.

Photo by greenforall.org