Project QUEST

Program basics

  • Seeks to improve employment and earnings through sector-based education and training for high-demand jobs
  • Provides tuition subsidies and support services to participants while they are enrolled in 2-year associate’s degree and one-year certificate programs at local community colleges for high-demand occupations
  • Training programs currently exist for health services, business systems and IT, and maintenance and repair professions

Strength of evidence

Evidence level: Promising (Third-highest tier)

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Promising (Third-highest tier)

Project QUEST is not yet in any of the major clearinghouses, but has demonstrated positive results in an independent, high-quality evaluation conducted by the Economic Mobility Corporation


Target population

Low- and moderate-income adults

Program cost

$10,501 per participant

Implementation locations

Dates active

1992-present

Outcomes and impact

  • Increased earnings by $5,000 annually after 9 years
  • Increased employment rate by 10 percentage points

Keys to successful implementation

  • Note: This content is under review.
  • Partner with local business leaders, large employers, city agencies, and any other key labor market actors to identify strong sectors of the local economy that will likely yield in-demand employment opportunities.
  • Tailor training and additional offerings closely to the local economy’s in-demand labor needs; consider the program the future supplier to fill those needs.
  • Provide weekly meetings that prioritize life skills like time management, study skills, financial planning, transition to employment, and conflict resolution.
  • Offer a broad suite of services around the job placement process, such as workshops on resume writing, professional interviewing, and securing referrals.
  • Remove barriers to participation that can be remedied with support services, such as reimbursement programs for childcare, transportation, and utilities.

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