About earn & learn
Earn & Learn is a summer youth employment program started by former Mayor Tom Barrett to prepare young people in the City of Milwaukee to enter the workforce through authentic work experience with local businesses, nonprofits, and community and faith-based organizations. Earn & Learn's mission is to support young people in their transition from adolescence to adulthood by providing an opportunity to develop practical workforce skills.
According to a 2018 report by The National Center for Education Statistics, nearly 13 percent of young people are neither in school nor working. Additionally, a US Conference of Mayors survey found that 51.6% of employers had no interest in hiring young adults, even when assisted by agencies that gather work-ready individuals. The lack of educational and workforce experience coupled with the highly competitive job market creates substantial barriers in young people's pursuit of employment and competitive wages.
Former Mayor Tom Barrett made a priority of creating hope and opportunities in the lives of young people in Milwaukee and the Earn & Learn Program does exactly this by empowering young people to take charge of their future. Not only does the Earn & Learn program advance the lives of young people, but it is also a key factor in strengthening our communities and local economy.