BROKE in Philly

Find your career: 12 more free or affordable job-training programs in Philly

These programs provide the tools, guidance and confidence needed to land solid work.

Part of the Philabundance Community Kitchen winter 2016 graduating class

Part of the Philabundance Community Kitchen winter 2016 graduating class

Danya Henninger / Billy Penn
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Billy Penn is one of 19 news organizations producing BROKE in Philly, a collaborative reporting project on economic justice. Read more at brokeinphilly.org or follow at @BrokeInPhilly.


It appears people in Philadelphia are very interested in ways to further their career. After Billy Penn published our roundup of a dozen affordable vocational programs and workshops, we were flooded with emails and social media replies from people thrilled about the straightforward list.

In a city where nearly half of residents can’t make ends meet, the job-training preoccupation isn’t surprising.

Though a career isn’t a cure-all — since systemic barriers, pay inequality, education level, disability, documentation status and race can all contribute to economic hardship — being adequately employed and receiving steady pay has been shown to help alleviate the psychological and financial burdens of being broke.

So to help those who feel overwhelmed, confused or even shafted by the job-hunting process, we’re publishing another set of resources.

Here are 12 more organizations and trade schools dedicated to providing Philadelphians with the tools, guidance and confidence they need to master a new career.

Episcopal Community Services

225 S. 3rd St. 

The RISE Initiative program at ESC offers one-on-one career counseling and coaching. Participants will work on resume building, job application submission, interviewing, networking, life skills basics and short and long-term career planning.

Call (215) 351-1443 for more information.

Philabundance Community Kitchen

3616 S. Galloway St. 

Acceptance and completion of this 500-hour, 14-week culinary vocation training program guarantees students earning their ServSafe certificate, an internship opportunity in the culinary industry, community service experience and retention services from PCK staff for two years after graduation. Required qualifications are listed here.

E-mail jstarling@philabundance.org for more information.

Philadelphia Technician Training Institute

7446 Ogontz Ave.  
Contact info@ptt.edu for more information.

Philadelphia Youth Network

400 Market St. 
WorkReady Philadelphia, managed by the PYN, offers four career-oriented models and programs that provide in-school and out-of-school young people ages 12 to 21 with apprenticeships, internships and academic credential attainment. Though not all are paid opportunities, they do bolster a young person’s work-readiness and provide on-the-job experience that many employers seek.
Fill out the Philadelphia Youth Network contact form for more information.

Programs Employing People

1200 S. Broad St. 
PEP provides employment services, vocational day training, rehabilitation, literacy and basic education, art for socialization and summer camps for adults with intellectual disabilities.
Call (215) 389-4006 for more information.

The Free Library of Philadelphia 

1901 Vine St. 

The Free Library of Philadelphia hosts multiple free and low-cost workshops and events throughout the year at different library branches, such as mock interview preparation, resume building and professional headshots. The Workplace and Business Resource & Innovation centers at the Parkway Central branch both provide one-on-one sessions with librarians who can help career changers and job seekers with information on search techniques, local emerging employment fields and online resources. There are also adult literacy classes, culinary literacy programs, college prep courses and computer classes.

Philadelphia OIC

1231 N. Broad St. 
The Philadelphia OIC is one of the oldest and largest career development and job training providers in the region. Opportunities featured on the OIC’s site include BankWork$, Workforce Academy, energy job training, hospitality job training, computer skills training, computer literacy, after-school programs, the Nehemiah Construction Program and the SOAR Re-Entry Program.
Contact hello@philaoic.org for more information.

The Workforce Institute’s City College

4322 N. Fifth St. 
Accredited diploma and certification programs for web design, medical office assistant and computer support specialist career paths.
Fill out the WFI City College contact form for more information.

Urban League of Philadelphia

121 S. Broad St.

The Career Center at the Urban League of Philadelphia has numerous services for job seekers, including access to a computer lab, resume workshops, an eight-week “job club” series, updates on job leads and community resources, mock interviews, one-on-one job coaching and information sessions with partnering employees. All services are offered free of charge for participants who complete the Career Center’s orientation session (offered every Monday).

Contact careercenter@urbanleaguephila.org for more information.

Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians

1617 John F. Kennedy Blvd. 
The Global Enterprise Hub at the Welcoming Center offers business technical assistance, small business workshops and events, business training classes (such as English for Entrepreneurs) and the Global Access Soft-Landing Program. In addition, the Welcoming Center has a Philadelphia Immigrant Innovation Hub in Mt. Airy, where eligible participants are provided services free of charge.
Contact info@welcomingcenter.org for more information.

Women’s Business Development Center

1315 Walnut St. 
Financial counseling services, entrepreneurial training, workshops and networking events, a business finance program and an online training courses portal designed and geared toward women hoping to enter — or hoping to thrive in — the business field.
Contact info@womensbdc.org or call (215) 790-9232 for more information.

YouthBuild Philly

1231 N. Broad St. 
If you’re a public school dropout in who’s between the ages of 18 and 20, you can apply to YouthBuild Philly Charter School. Successful graduation benefits include an AmeriCorps award for continued education, college counseling, a high school degree and vocational job training programs in four fields: Business Administration/Customer Service, Childcare, Healthcare and Building Trades.
Fill out YouthBuild’s contact form for more information.

Additional online resources

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