First Place For Youth
Jun 20, 2022
Held: June 21, 2022 at 11 am PDT
Missed the webinar or want an encore? View the recording below.
Education is a key pathway to higher wages, however; less than 10% of foster youth complete post-secondary education. First Place for Youth and collaborative community partners seek to address this gap. Join hostErica Waterford, VP of Education and Employment at First Place for Youth, for the first in a series of webinars discussing what is working and where we need to collectively focus energy to close the living-wage gap to support the dreams of those we serve.
During this first webinar, attendees will learn about First Place’s new innovative practices that move youth towards progression and completion of post-secondary education and training programs that lead to sustainable careers.
We’re thrilled to have Evergreen Valley College’s Maniphone Dickerson, Dean of Business & Workforce Development, and Maricela Martinez, Counselor, share the college’s new focus on addressing barriers facing transition-age youth and promoting success from the college perspective.
Erica provides strategic oversight, leadership, and quality assurance of statewide education and employment programming, including program development, management, and fidelity oversight, and external workforce development, education, and training partnership management. Erica brings a demonstrated history of non-profit leadership, expertise in workforce development, educational training, and career coaching. She previously served as Director of Education and Employment Services and has held various positions within First Place for Youth and externally, which she contributes to grounding strategy with a connected understanding of frontline work. Erica is committed to bridging inclusive access and opportunities for ALL communities to reach stability and wellbeing through leading and developing thriving teams for larger community impact. Erica holds a master’s degree in Counseling (Education emphasis) from Chapman University and a Bachelor’s degree in psychology and sociology from the University of California, Davis.
Maniphone Dickerson is the Division Dean for Business and Workforce Development at Evergreen Valley College in California. Dr. Dickerson has over 20 years of experience in higher education administration. As a first-generation refugee from Laos, Maniphone is dedicated to widening educational attainment to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion in high-demand and high-wage occupations. Dr. Dickerson’s research interests and area praxis are Southeast Asian American diaspora, Career and Workforce curriculum development, DEI in STEM areas, apprenticeship, and women in male-dominated occupations. Dr. Dickerson received a PhD in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in Adult and Career Workforce Education from the University of South Florida, an MBA from Southern Connecticut State University, and a BA in Sociology from Quinnipiac University.
Stephanie is the Regional Education and Employment Manager for Northern California with First Place for Youth. In this role, she oversees program development, operations, and training, and supports staff assisting transition-age foster youth develop education and employment skills to reach self-sustainability. Previously Stephanie worked in rehabilitation with Juvenile Justice involved youth at Contra Costa County Probation. Concurrently she worked in partnership with The California State Department of Rehabilitation at Anka Behavioral Health as a Job Developer providing education, employment, and vocational services to adults with disabilities. Through previous work supporting individuals with autism, mental health, disabilities, homeless, and Foster Youth, Stephanie found a passion for supporting youth to build the skills and resources needed to live successfully in their community regardless of ability or disability, barriers, or background. Stephanie is motivated by connecting opportunities and supports to youth dreaming, or yet to dream, about the amazing community contributors and difference-makers they will become but lack the supportive resources. Stephanie graduated Summa Cum Laude, receiving a BA in Sociology from California State University, Sacramento.
Maricela is currently employed as an adjunct Career Technology Counselor at Evergreen College in the Business and Workforce Division. She retired from San Jose City College in December 2021, after 32 years of service. Of her tenure at SJCC, she states, “I had the privilege to serve, instruct, counsel, encourage, direct and empower the remarkable diverse population of students SJECCD serves. I love talking to students, listening to their dreams, challenges, and life stories. My primary goal has always been to provide guidance and resources the students need to succeed in their academic and personal goals.” Maricela has an MA in Education/Counseling from San Jose State University, and a BA in Child Development from California State University, Northridge.
Research & Publications
In 2023, First Place for Youth and our network partners in Massachusetts, New York, Mississippi, and Cincinnati served 1,660 young […]
Following the First Place for Youth retreat in Alabama, I continued to New York, Washington D.C., the Carolinas, and ultimately […]
First Place for Youth is committed to rectifying historical inequities and empowering historically oppressed groups by acknowledging the importance of […]