Services for Youth

The EMPOWER Program, operated by the Merced County Office of Education, provides educational assistance and job training to help out-of-school young adults ages 16-24 succeed in school, then transition to college and/or a career.  Young adults that do not have a high school diploma are provided with basic education skills, tutoring, and study skills, with an emphasis on literacy and numeracy, in order to obtain a GED or high school diploma.  EMPOWER youth are also provided paid and/or unpaid work experience, employability skills training, leadership development, placement in post-secondary education to include career technical education and/or occupational skills training, support services, adult mentoring, comprehensive guidance and counseling, and follow-up services for at least 12 months after completion of participation in the program.  The goal of all planned services is to lead to educational and career success for each participant.

EMPOWER Program Services

  • Support Services
  • Paid and Unpaid Work Experience – Including Internships and Job Shadowing
  • Leadership Development
  • Adult Mentoring
  • Completion of a High School Diploma – Drop-out Prevention
  • Career Technical Training/Occupational Skills Training
  • Guidance and Counseling
  • Alternative Secondary School Offerings
  • Summer Employment Opportunities
  • Follow-up Services (12 Months)

To learn more about the EMPOWER Program, please contact Monica Maldonado at 209.381.5926 or