Founded in February 2021, the SkillUp Together Fund provides $1,000 grants direct to workers seeking to upskill.
Many displaced workers cannot afford to enroll in training classes to advance their careers.
Empower workers through grants of up to $1,000 per student to cover their training costs and life supports such as rent and daycare.
Our fund partners help workers land a job they’re passionate about, while increasing their annual income (up to $20k+) to unlock economic mobility.
Addressing the Problem
Millions of Jobs Lost
COVID-19 has created an unprecedented economic crisis, disproportionately impacting low-income individuals and those without a college degree working on the frontlines of our economy. Nearly 40% of those in households making less than $40,000 lost a job as a result of the pandemic and 47% of job losses are expected to be permanent.
The Need for New Skills
27 million jobs will need to be filled over the next 5 years in high-growth sectors like technology, healthcare, and skilled trades. Displaced workers need short-term re-training to unlock these opportunities.
Founded in February 2021, the SkillUp Together Fund gives displaced workers a headstart by covering up to $1,000 in training costs and supports. By funding these scholarships, these grants will go towards unlocking each student’s potential and empowering thousands of Americans to achieve economic mobility.
Grants are awarded through select training providers with demonstrated outcomes for completion, job placement and increased income for their students.
workers already on the platform
fund recipients have secured new careers since the fund launch
Workers have already received grants since Feb 2021
Hear from recent Per Scholas graduate and SkillUp Together Fund recipient, Brianna, as she shares her upskilling journey from custodian to IT Support Specialist.
How It Works
Our Fund is designed to make an immediate impact for displaced workers and students.
Here’s a quick look through their journey.
that career choices have shifted and new skills are required to break into a new job or industry.
program options that best match their needs and apply the skills they already have. Career pathways include tech, healthcare, customer support, CDL and more.
into training programs that are tailored to help them discover new skills and land a high-growth job upon completion.
with skills for in-demand careers and job placement options to get them hired.
“Before this, I was a custodian. I knew I could do more, I just never knew what I should do when it came down to my career. I just wanted a work life balance and I knew I could get there with this program. SkillUp helped me pay my rent a month early, so I didn’t have to worry about it while completing my program. I am really grateful for this program – it changed my life.”
Graduate from Ohio
“My Per Scholas journey was challenging but well worth it! The financial support from the SkillUp partnership has helped to support me through my IT Support Course by helping to provide me with my essentials and assisting my family with groceries. I am looking forward to starting my new career in Information Technology!”
Okundaye- Graduate from Boston
“I had no tangible qualifications to put on a resume and couldn’t afford training and exams for the IT certifications that I knew of. Merit America provided everything that I was looking for.”
Merit America: IT Helpdesk Technician
“I see myself becoming a developer and creating my own apps or software to help benefit people who are constantly on the go.”
Generation USA: Software Tester
Partners with a History of Success
We’ve partnered with quality providers who deliver comprehensive training and job placement programs, here are some key results:
Job Placement from our partner programs
Increase in salary earnings among placed graduates
of graduates from some of our partner programs are people who have been traditionally under Represented within the tech and healthcare industries.
Meet our Training Partners
Per Scholas is a national organization that prepares individuals traditionally underrepresented in technology for high-growth careers in the industry. With campuses in 14 cities, they’ve trained more than 11,000 people.
Generation works directly with employers to build custom 5-12 week training programs delivered at no cost to students across the country. The curriculum includes a mix behaviors, technical skills, and mindsets that student need to be successful on the job.
Merit America provides a path to skilled careers for adults without bachelors’ degrees through fast, flexible training programs focused on in-demand roles and partnerships with leading employers. Learners master technical and professional skills and work with coaches to transition to upwardly-mobile tech careers.
MedCerts is an eLearning platform that gamifies career retraining. It’s a self-paced, structured program that certifies people to work in Online Healthcare and IT.
Creating IT Futures reskills students in IT hardware and software. Everything from building computers to troubleshooting networks to securing data. Students also receive a suite of career services from resume building, mock interviews, career fairs and introductions to employers with open tech jobs.
Apprenti combines (1) a diversity-focused talent sourcing strategy, (2) a bias-reducing screening process, (3) 2-5 months of intense technical instruction, and (4) 2000 hours/one year of on-the-job training in order to create alternative recruiting pipelines into well-compensated roles in technology careers.
i.c.stars offers a hands-on, two-year job training program for talented, low-income young adults in Chicago and Milwaukee. Trainees develop advanced technical and leadership skills by responding to real RFPs from employer partners.
NPower creates pathways to economic prosperity by launching digital careers for military veterans and young adults from underserved communities.
Austin Career Institute is an award-winning licensed vocational school in Austin, Texas offering hands-on training and job assistance in well paying, in demand careers
Climb Hire trains diverse and determined talent to break into new careers.
Propel America helps young adults move from high school into a career and higher education
Create Computing Careers recruits and trains individuals who may have otherwise felt a career in tech was unattainable
ForgeNow trains adults in all stages of life for in-demand, well-paying careers
SkillUp Together Fund Founders
SkillUp is a coalition of job readiness providers, teaming up with one mission: help workers get rehired for in-demand jobs. By equipping them with career guidance and expert training, SkillUp is leading 40+ million Americans towards economic stability and mobility.
Stand Together empowers people dedicated to helping others improve their lives. Our philanthropic community tackles some of the biggest challenges of our time, including reforming the nation’s criminal justice system, strengthening K-12 education, helping neighbors beat poverty and addiction, empowering everyone to find fulfilling work, and more. We can all make a greater difference by uniting together than by acting on our own. For more information visit, www.standtogether.org
Social Finance is a nonprofit organization that develops funding strategies to measurably improve lives. The organization has mobilized more than $150 million of capital to address a wide range of social issues in areas such as workforce development, homelessness, and criminal justice.
JFF is a national nonprofit that drives transformation in the American workforce and education systems. For more than 35 years, JFF has led the way in designing innovative and scalable solutions that create access to economic advancement for all. www.jff.org
[email protected] is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to increase career opportunities for the more than 70 million adults in the U.S. who do not have a four-year college degree but are Skilled Through Alternative Routes – or, “STARs.” We serve STARs through a suite of products, tools, and solutions that enable individuals to access the skills and jobs that lead to meaningful, well-paying careers. We empower the diverse ecosystem supporting STARs in a movement uniting employers, educators, workforce leaders, philanthropists, and advocates.
“SkillUp is helping to put America’s displaced workers back to work with new skills and better career pathways. The Charles Koch Foundation is proud to be a founding member of the SkillUp Coalition”
Executive Director of the Charles Koch Foundation
Unlocking new economic mobility requires investment. If you share our urgency to empower a new skilled workforce from among COVID’s hardest hit populations, let’s talk.