Earn your GED or high school diploma, start a career and become empowered by your community.


Become part of the next generation of convervationists through environmental education, preservation and service.

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American YouthWorks’ YouthBuild program combines education with paid career training, personal and professional development, and service projects at no cost to participants.


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Frequently Asked Questions
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The program offers young adults, ages 16 to 24, the opportunity to complete their education by earning a high school diploma (ages 18 and older) at our on-site charter school or in our instructor-led GED program through Goodwill Excel. No experience is required and participants receive paid career training and industry certifications in computer technology, healthcare, manufacturing or green construction.

In addition, individualized support services and learning plans are provided, including: counseling, basic needs assistance, graduate support, college readiness, and the New Start initiative for youth who have had involvement with the criminal justice system.

The YouthBuild program also has service opportunities available for 18-28 year old high school/GED graduates from across the country to serve a full time AmeriCorps term (What is AmeriCorps?). AmeriCorps members provide meaningful service to the Central Texas community and help program participants reach their goals!

Education & Career Development

Program participants get paid to train in one of four in-demand fields — construction, healthcare, manufacturing and media/information technology — while earning their High School Diploma or GED.

Upon successful completion of the program, alumni have gained employment as community health worker, IT help desk support and Plumbers Union apprentice. Alumni have also gone on to further their education, such as in network administration and medical assistance or by earning business degrees and HVAC certifications.

Learn about alumni resources.

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Community Engagement

In addition to preparing young people for in-demand careers, participants work together to address some of the biggest social inequities in our community, such as houselessness and affordable housing, health disparities, and the digital divide.


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Participant Support & Resources

• Counseling & Case Management
• Mental Health Services
• New Start Initiative
• Child Care Assistance
• Alumni Resources


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Get Involved

• Become an AmeriCorps Member
• Volunteer, Tutor & Mentor
• Host an apprentice or intern at your company
• Construction Services for Nonprofits
• Custom-printed Marketing Products for Nonprofits
• Make a Donation or Gift


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Frequently Asked Questions

The YouthBuild program is not a public school and is not covered by TEA open-enrollment policies.

American YouthWorks' YouthBuild is a Department of Labor pre-apprenticeship program that combines education and job training. This includes GED classes and high school diploma classes through an on-campus partnership with The Goodwill Excel Center.

All programming is in English.

The YouthBuild program is for youth 16-24 who are not currently attending high school.

The average student graduates in nine months to a year, though it may vary depending on the number of credits and academic skill level at the time you enroll.

The GED is a total of 4 tests that cover the topics of mathematics, social studies, science, and reasoning through language arts.

Both will qualify you to attend college and trade schools or join the military.

There are a few things to consider when deciding between a High School Diploma and GED, such as the length of time to complete, long term goals, and pre-placement test scores.

Participants are the best at determining their own educational path. Applicants should speak to American YouthWorks' YouthBuild and Goodwill Excel staff to determine the best course of action to meet their goals.

The YouthBuild program has a New Start initiative, which is committed to supporting youth who have had experience in the criminal justice system. Applicants with violent felonies convictions on a case by case basis.

Participants will choose one training track. Once they have received their trade certification they can move on to another.

Half of the day is spent in high school diploma or GED classes, while the other half of the day is spent learning a trade, combining certification classes with hands-on training.

Monday-Thursday | 8:00am - 4:30pm
Friday | 8:00am - 12:00pm

American YouthWorks' YouthBuild does not provide housing for participants.

Yes, participants are either required to have a state issued ID or a passport. A birth certificate and social security card are required as well.

No, but you must have right to work documentation.

Need help getting started?

Fill out the interest form to have a recruiter contact you.

Interest Form
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