Participants in the city’s Summer Youth Employment Program, not only gained invaluable work experience alongside city staff, they also earned the Arizona Career Readiness Credential (ACRC) through a partnership with Arizona@Work, Maricopa County’s Workforce Development Division.
The ACRC was created after extensive research by the governor’s office as a way to highlight the talent of the Arizona workforce by validating an individual’s mastery of seven core skill areas that are the most relevant to a large majority of today’s jobs. The skills areas include: applied mathematics, locating information, reading for information, thinking critically/problem solving, conveying professionalism, effective communication and promoting teamwork and collaboration.
The credential process involves an initial skills assessment, instructional courseware and successful completion of a battery of assessments in the critical skill areas.
The desired effect is that jobseekers will be able to demonstrate to potential employers that they have mastered the skills that are most important to success.
According to Workforce Development trainer Jerry Claudio, the ACRC is just what the market ordered.
“Employers were looking for a way to both scout talent and ensure that workers are indeed job-ready. The ACRC meets those two objectives very well. In our pilot programs, we have seen attainment rates of 80 to 90 percent. In addition, the soft skills curriculum has been very well received by youth and adults alike. The credential is a great addition to any résumé. It helps jobseekers stand out among the competition and shows future employers that the candidate is ready to go from day one.”
For more information about earning the Arizona Career Readiness Credential, please visit https://acrc.az.gov/about or contact 602-372-9742.
To learn more about the Surprise Summer Youth Employment Program, please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/SYEP or call 623-222-3241.