Youth Workforce Program

The IDA Youth Workforce Program provides both workshop and hands–on transition skills training to assist youth between the ages of 14 –20 in pursuing career goals and obtaining success in the workforce.


Before You Apply

There are five tasks to complete initially as a part of the application process:

  • Determine Eligibility
  • Review Technical Requirements
  • Obtain Referrals (if needed)
  • Complete Application
  • Submit Application

Determine Eligibility

The IDA Youth Workforce Program (YWP) was specifically designed to provide life skills, dyslexia resilience and career development content and training in a digital format that students can take independently on a set schedule. Students completing the training will receive a certificate of completion.

The target audience is

  • High school Juniors for mentoring, training, and job shadowing experience with 2nd year placement for mentoring, supportive services and work experience placement.
  • High school Seniors for mentoring, training, and job shadowing experience with 2nd year continuous mentoring and supportive services; and
  • College students for training.

This program is specifically designed for students with dyslexia or other related learning differences. For the purpose of making a suitable internship placement upon conclusion of the instructional period, applicants should live within reasonable driving distance of an IDA Branch. (Find the nearest IDA branch here)

Review Technical Requirements

All online courses require access to the Internet. Unless you will be traveling to a campus computer lab, you will need to have access to your own computer and a high-speed Internet Service Provider. A webcam and a headset or microphone for your computer is recommended and may be required.


  • PC, Mac, Chromebook or tablet
  • Speakers
  • Microphone
  • Webcam
  • Additional Hardware may be Required


  • Windows 10 or newer
  • Mac OS 10.14 or newer

Internet Connection

  • High speed Broadband Internet Connection is Required
  • Recommended Internet speeds:
    • Download speed of at least 25 mbps
    • Upload speed of at least 3mbps
    • Ping response of less than 100ms

Please consider the following while participating in online courses:

  • Using a shared Internet connection will impact connectivity, such as additional household members use of streaming TV, gaming, and other Internet usage.
  • Wireless connections may be impacted by the distance from the router and interference from microwaves and other electronics. (Wired connections are recommended.)
  • Your Internet Service Provider’s performance may vary throughout the day based on community usage.


  • The most recent release of Chrome or Firefox is Recommended

For possible assistance with internet access, please visit the FCC Affordable Connectivity Program web page.

You will also need to perform the following tasks:

  • basic computer skills
  • sending/receiving email
  • sending and receiving attachments via email
  • using a web browser
  • finding resources through search engines
  • downloading and installing software
  • familiarity with using browser plug-ins (e.g. PDF reader, video, audio)
  • experience/familiarity with a variety of file formats such as: .pdf “Portable Document Format”, .rtf “Rich Text Format”, .doc or .docx “Microsoft Word Document”, and .txt “Text document”
  • the ability to be self-directed in learning new technology skills (e.g. following a handout, a step-by-step tutorial, online video help, or access to support to learn necessary skills

Obtain Referral from IDA Branch or Applicants School

If your child has received a referral from their teacher to receive any extra assistance through their school, you may opt to include their counselor in this process by having them complete this section. If you family is connected with a local branch of IDA and they are referring your child to this program, there is also space to include that referral in this section.

Complete the Application

Please refer to the schedule below to choose the session that works best for your schedule.


Fall Cohort FC24

Winter Cohort WC23*

Spring Cohort SC24

Application Deadline




Session Start Date




Session End Date




*WC23 will have a 1-week winter break December 25, 2023 – January 1, 2024.

You will indicate your desired program session on page 1 of the application.

Candidates will need to provide basic information on the application that will help us with proper placement in the program.

  1. Section 1 – Select a cohort
  2. Section 2 – Student Data Form
  3. Section 3 – Student Education
  4. Section 4 – Student Demographics
  5. Section 5 – Student Questionnaire
  6. Section 6 – School/Branch Referral Form
  7. Section 7 – Authorization Form

We recommend completing the application on a laptop or desktop. Please do not send materials via mail. Applications are to be completed and submitted online.

Start The Application Process