Beverly A. Scott, Ph.D., Founder, Introducing Youth to American Infrastructure+ (iyai+)
I am extremely pleased and excited to officially announce the launch of “Introducing Youth to American Infrastructure+” (iyai+) www.iyai.org. Iyai+ is an IRC Section 501 (c) (3) non-profit.
“People-readiness” is a well-documented, high-risk challenge across the nation’s critical infrastructure sectors. Significantly increased investment in 21st century physical infrastructure and “people-readiness” at all levels for ALL communities is essential to our collective national success. We cannot afford to underutilize any segment of the American talent pool. Every American must be able to reach their full potential and share in that success.
Collectively – one of our biggest challenges is to inspire, educate, and engageyoung people to choose infrastructure careers. It also presents a tremendous opportunity to reverse the persistent under-representation of people of color, women, our most vulnerable “at risk” and “disconnected” youth, and our disability community in both employment and business opportunities. And, enlist partners at all levels – including our veterans to assist in this important work – which includes mentoring, career pathway internship and apprenticeship programs, public service, and life success skills.
We are living in a profoundly changing world that requires serious rethinking about the “career-readiness” education, skills, experiences and exposures necessary for sustainability and survival in the 21stcentury – beyond a singular “job”- focus.
Iyai’s collaborative multi-sectoral, multi-disciplinary, people-readiness approach is by design. Starting with the critical lifeline infrastructure sectors – transportation, electricity/power, telecommunications, and water – the iyai+ mission is establishment of a collaborative, multi-sectoral, national information sharing and learning network for better and best practices in “STEAM/STEM” education, infrastructure training and development at all levels.
Why the “+”? At the end of the day, it’s about values and outcomes – personal responsibility, civic engagement,and community empowerment.
This is lifetime work that requires a holistic, comprehensive approach to people development– starting with identifying and lifting up the good work, lessons learned, experiences, and innovation already underway in local communities of all sizes – across the country.Working together we can make a difference. I invite you to JOIN the iyai+ network today!