Established in 1910, The Urban League is the nation’s oldest and largest community based movement devoted to empowering African Americans to enter the economic and social mainstream. Today, the National Urban League, headquartered in New York City, spearheads the non-partisan efforts of its local affiliates.
The mission of the Houston Area Urban League is to enable African Americans and other minorities to secure economic self-reliance, parity, power and civil rights.
Message From The President
Better Education is Key to a Better Job
Among adults age 25 to 34, the U.S. is ninth among industrialized nations in the share of its population that has at least a high school degree. In the same age group, the United States ranks seventh, with Belgium, in the share of people who hold a college degree. This may sound pretty good when one considers the total number of industrialized nations and the sheer number of people that live in the U.S. but the reality is we have slipped considerably in our world rankings. In fact, just 20 years ago we were ranked first in both categories.
Each year the Paris-based Organization for Cooperation and Development analyzes 30 nations and draws conclusions about achievement based on international test scores. The study shows that compared with their peers in Europe, Asia and elsewhere, 15 year olds in the United States are below average in applying math skills to real-life tasks.
Several years ago the Houston Area Urban League formed a partnership with Prairie View A&M to tackle this problem. A weekend program was developed to help young people in the areas of math and science called STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math). Instructors from Prairie View, Urban League staff, and community volunteers come together to help students increase their math learning skills and gain an appreciation for math as it relates to their future success and to understand how it applies in their life. In our push to achieve economic self reliance, power, parity and civil rights, education is the key, to making that happen. Our Educational and Youth Development programs encourage our youth to pursue education to acquire the knowledge need to achieve their goals. The global job markets and economies require a 21st Century workforce that is knowledge based. It is imperative that regain the ground we have lost in order for citizens in our communities to have a competitive edge for the current and emerging markets.
However, today’s adult population is being heavily impacted as our society experiences the difficulties in adjusting to emerging technologies that have a direct effect on our economy. The August Labor report showed that the nation added no new jobs and unemployment remained around a stubborn 9%. Months earlier, major institutions like Houston’s school district, the City of Houston, as well as the State of Texas began slashing thousands of positions that will once again swell the numbers of persons looking for work. As these people re enter the unemployment lines they will soon be searching for re-employment and competing with those already struggling to find a job. The Houston Area Urban League has been addressing this problem for years and has helped countless numbers successfully gain re-employment. Our Workforce Development Department helps people learn effective means to search for jobs in today’s lean market. They learn job application skills and have access to the agency’s job bank database identifying companies looking to hire qualified people.
The Urban League is also equipped to assist the Entrepreneur looking for advice and counsel as they start a small business or technical assistance as they attempt to grow their business. The Houston Area Urban League in partnership with the National Urban League and 90 plus affiliates throughout the country stand ready to assist individuals striving for equality and equal access to opportunity. Learn more about our “12 Point Jobs Plan” and the many other efforts we are involved with serving you at the local and national level by visiting us at www.nul.org.