Trades Orientation Program Associate

$60,000 - $65,000 yearly
  • Working Partnerships USA
  • 2302 Zanker Road, San Jose, CA, USA
  • May 24, 2021
Full time Nonprofit-Social Services

Job Description

Working Partnerships USA is seeking a Trades Orientation Program Associate to join our exceptional team. For 25 years, Working Partnerships USA has been at the forefront of the national movement for a just economy driven by the power of working people.

The Program Associate will support the Trades Orientation Program (TOP), a construction career training and placement initiative that helps jobseekers from under-represented communities to enter apprenticeships and achieve a long-term, family-supporting career in the construction trades.  The Program Associate may also be responsible for outreach and administrative work that support our efforts to achieve economic and racial justice in Silicon Valley through innovative policy, research and organizing campaigns.

The Trades Orientation Program (TOP) is led by Working Partnerships USA in collaboration with union, industry, and community partners. TOP is an apprenticeship readiness program designed to educate participants about the construction industry and prepare them to succeed in a construction trades apprenticeship. Participants are adults who are actively seeking to enter a career in a construction trade. TOP includes three components: 1) outreach, orientation and assessment; 2) a 130-hour pre-apprenticeship course, taught by certified instructors with journey-level work experience in the construction trades; and 3) twelve months of intensive 1-1 coaching through the apprenticeship application process and retention support once they begin work. TOP serves a wide range of applicants who are seeking a good, family-supporting career, with a special emphasis on homeless individuals, women, communities of color, veterans, formerly incarcerated individuals, recipients of public assistance, and at-risk youth.

This is a full-time, salaried position, including required work up to 2-3 evenings per week and some Saturdays.



Under the direction of the project lead, the Program Associate will be responsible for day-to-day support for TOP, including but not limited to:

  • Providing group and individual counseling to TOP participants to support them in achieving their career goals, including intensive career coaching and individualized case management.
  • Developing expertise in understanding and guiding clients through the various application processes and work requirements for each of the 25+ construction apprenticeship programs; maintaining up-to-date information on each program and be able to advise and support students in navigating each application process.
  • Building relations with key individuals at each construction apprenticeship program and/or hiring hall; understanding each trade’s hiring needs and referring applicants who will perform to their standards.
  • Staff support, class announcements, 1-1 counseling, and other administrative and programmatic duties related to the 130-hour course. NOTE: Some early morning, evening and Saturday work is required, in alignment with the MC3 course schedules.
  • Coordinating closely with the course instructor, monitoring students’ learning and progress, and working with the instructor to make any needed course corrections.
  • Carrying out an outreach plan to meet enrollment targets for each cohort, including recruitment targets for specific under-represented populations such as women, veterans, homeless persons, or others.
  • Making presentations to a wide range of audiences including prospective TOP applicants, students, career counselors and job developers, construction union reps and employers, coalition partners, allies, funders and decision-makers
  • Maintaining all client records required for the program, and performing timely data entry in multiple databases, as needed to meet the requirements of city, county, state, and/or federal grants.


In addition to their TOP duties, the Program Associate will participate in Working Partnerships USA staff meetings and trainings and support major organizational campaigns and projects.

Specific roles vary depending on the need, but may include:

  • Providing support for actions, meetings and events, including scheduling, turnout, event staffing, speaking, compiling minutes, and other duties as needed.
  • Representing Working Partnerships at meetings with allies and supporters, coordinating and attending actions, and supporting the work of the campaign and organization as a whole.



  • Minimum 2-3 years of prior related work experience.
  • A demonstrated commitment to worker and community organizing, economic justice, and social justice movements.
  • Strong communication skills, in both one-on-one and group settings; experience in building trusting relationships with diverse individuals from many different backgrounds and living situations.
  • Excellent attention to detail and accuracy; ability to work with high level of complex systems and manage large quantities of client information with thoroughness, accuracy, confidentiality and professionalism.
  • Strong time management and task management skills; ability to create and follow through on a workplan to reach a given set of goals; flexible and adaptive to adjust workplan as needed.
  • Proficiency in maintaining and retrieving client data and records, including accurate and timely data entry and cleaning.
  • Strong oral communication skills and experience making presentations to multiple audiences.
  • Work closely with other team members; accountable to both team and individual goals.
  • Inquisitive, flexible and adaptable with strong initiative and follow through skills.
  • Able to exercise good judgment, deal with ambiguity, quickly respond to unexpected situations and problem-solve.    
  • Tenacity and resourcefulness in working through challenges or setbacks to reach a goal.
  • Familiarity with Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel and Google Sheets.
  • Some travel is required, primarily within Santa Clara County.



  • Experience working in low-income communities of color.
  • Experience in social work, workforce development, career technical education, job development, or related fields.
  • Experience working with the building and construction trades.
  • Bilingual in Spanish or Vietnamese.
  • Valid California driver’s license and daily access to a vehicle.



  • Sit, bend, and reach with hands and arms.
  • Lift approximately 20-25 lbs. on occasion.
  • Stand and move throughout the office.
  • Have consistent and reliable attendance.
  • Interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.
  • Work under pressure with changing, ambiguous priorities.
  • Communicate effectively and promptly to clients or employees of the organization.
  • Climb stairs and steps.
  • High level of manual dexterity to adeptly type and use computer equipment.
  • Auditory and visual skills – Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and ability to adjust focus.
  • Follow written and oral instructions and procedures.


 The salary for this position is $60,000-$65,000, plus a generous benefits package, including full family health insurance, dental, vision and 401(k). This is a full-time, exempt position with opportunity for advancement over time.

Working Partnerships USA is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, disability, gender, nationality, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or any other prohibited category.



Email cover letter and resume. Applications without a cover letter may not be reviewed.

When applying, please note that you saw the job posted on the NOVAworks Job Board. If you need help with your resumé, please see a NOVAworks Career Advisor.

Deadline to Apply

June 4, 2021