Opportunity Works

At a Glance

A national effort that paved pathways to college and career success for 2,000+ youth who were out of school and work—and proved the impact of JFF’s Back on Track model.




Areas of Work
  • Ensuring Equity in Advancement
  • Meeting Employer Needs
Experts Involved
  • MA
  • CT
  • PA
  • LA
  • WA
  • CA


Our Work

There are 4.6 million opportunity youth who aspire to succeed but are locked out of the labor market without a path to a family-supporting wage, with dire consequences for them and for the country.

We now know what works for these young people: a rigorous, independent evaluation found that Back on Track postsecondary bridging implemented in Opportunity Works doubled the postsecondary enrollment rate of opportunity youth, and improved it six-fold for young men of color.

The Keys to Opportunity Works' Success

Put community-based organizations at the center of the work to assemble local partnerships, and provide them with expert coaching

Use a model that is specific enough to guide practice and flexible enough to be used in different contexts

Plan for scale and sustainability from day one.

Hire staff who can relate to young people and deliver quality programming

Our Team