Chicano youth: participation in work experience a program of the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act

This study deals with the development in 1978 in the City of Santa Barbara of the Open Road New Jobs Program—a CETA subsidized training program which involved a placement and training of seventeen Chicano youths in a variety of public sector jobs in the City. The program sought to provide an environment that would enable the trainees to develop the skills needed to hold the jobs to which they were assigned and to increase their confidence in being able to hold similar jobs in the future. The seventeen trainees were all interviewed by the writer one year after they completed their training. The interviews reveal a low level of job holding skills in the trainees, and described their experience in training--the obstacles they faced and the benefits they derived from going through this program. Given to the smallness of the sample, no definite conclusion as to the effectiveness of the program could be reached. Yet even within its time limits, the study demonstrates the continued need for job qualifying training of young people, particularly those belonging to the minority groups. Not only just for immediate short term employment, but for the acquisition of skills that are essential for securing an economic foothold in the society in which they are to spend their adult lives.