The International Youth Foundation (IYF) is pleased to announce a significant new partnership with the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to promote youth workforce development across Mexico.

The new three-year program, to be implemented in all six Mexican states bordering the United States, will help Mexico’s young people make the successful transition from upper secondary school to the workforce.

The program will support Mexico’s technical high school system to better align its curriculum with the needs of the country’s growth sectors and afford graduates of these high schools with the competencies and experience needed by local companies. To this end, the program will focus on five main goals: to integrate internships into the school curriculum; to improve school-based career guidance activities; to enhance job placement services; to establish a student performance tracking system; and to create a youth-friendly online portal to employment. The program also will address gender imbalances that exist in technical fields of study and the labor market.

“By strengthening the job training and placement of young men and women in Mexico, this program will help develop a skilled workforce that is so critical to Mexico’s future economic growth” says Bill Reese, President and CEO of IYF. “It will also bring together the public and private sectors to create broad stakeholder alliances, which are the very foundation for creating lasting, systemic change.”

On the ground, IYF is partnering with three organizations that have strong ties to Mexico’s business and NGO community, as well as state and local governments. Working with Centro de Desarrollo Económico de Tijuana (CDT), Fundación del Empresariado Chihuahuense (FECHAC), and Fundación Comunidar will facilitate the program’s start and ultimate success. IYF’s current work in Nuevo León, Chihuahua, and Baja California through New Employment Opportunities (NEO) and Youth:Work Mexico (YWM), will give the new initiative a strong head start through existing alliances with the private sector, local and federal governments in those states.