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Our Why

The Jennings O’Neil Career Academy’s purpose is to awaken potential, provide second-chance opportunities and create futures.

We offer career and technical education opportunities to at-risk young adults, ages 18 - 29. Our goal is to ensure that our program participants are well equipped and fully prepared to enter the workforce and have the necessary training and industry certifications to access high-potential, family-sustaining trade careers. Skills in these specialized areas can lead to in-demand jobs with great earning potential and employee benefits, such as company-sponsored tuition, with the goal of becoming lifelong learners. If their future decision is to attend college, then they will have the immediate connections and a clear pathway to continue their educational journey, and the job skills learned can be used to provide financial support while in college.


We believe and are confident that if given the opportunity, skills, and wraparound support, every young adult, regardless of ZIP code or race, can be empowered to thrive.

We believe that every young adult has potential and deserves the opportunity to graduate from high school with a recognized industry certification. 98% of our programs are aligned with state or national certifications and/or licenses.
Students should be prepared to pursue their chosen career path prior to graduating high school. They should also be encouraged to become lifelong learners with the capacity to engage in a globally collaborative society.
As the aging labor force population continues to opt for retirement across all industries and as new technologies are on the rise, employers face a growing need for talented, skilled workers.

We are positioned to close the graduation gap and combat inequities in the educational system. Our stimulating hands-on training program, on-site team of resource navigators to provide support services, and smaller class size, will give every program participant the opportunity to succeed  and to learn based on their individual learning style. 

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Youth Conference

We will provide a safe and engaging learning environment for students who have been removed from their home school. These students are often mislabeled as bad kids, a description that tends to follow them throughout their secondary educational years. We will provide them with the opportunity to achieve greatness.
We believe that every student acquires the ability to thrive, regardless of their physical ability. We will provide students with special needs the vocational and training experiences to promote educational, independent living and career development to assist them in transitioning into successful post-school opportunities.
We are certain that the blue-collar economy will be revived through job skills and workforce development training. Under the infrastructure plan and over the next ten years, 15 million jobs are projected to be saved or created at every educational level.  The majority of new infrastructure jobs will be allotted to workers with a high school diploma and industry certification.

Our Impact Strategy

We will drive impact through the establishment of strategic partnerships.

To be successful, it is critical to have the involvement of all parties: the student, parents or caregivers, local school system, technical colleges, court system, support service providers, talent providers, employers, and policymakers. Together, this collaboration will ensure that inequalities in the achievement gap decline, access to economic mobility rises, and pathways to opportunities are created.

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