UTEC’s comprehensive and long-term program model is intentionally designed for young adults with proven risk factors, primarily incarceration and other serious criminal histories. Our three service communities are all designated Gateway Cities: mid-sized cities characterized by high poverty rates, low educational attainment levels, and a strong manufacturing heritage. Our young adults’ experience and opportunities are shaped by these community challenges.
Proven Risk Factors (FY18)
UTEC reached nearly 600 young people last year, and 148 were enrolled in the full-time program model. Of these:
- 94% had a criminal record
- 67% were gang involved
- 66% lacked a high school credential
- 52% were parenting or expecting
Further, 94% of our young adults had more than one of these risk factors, and nearly half had 3 or more risk factors.
More about UTEC’s Young People
Enrolled young adults are from Lowell (77%), Lawrence (12%) and, new in 2018, Haverhill (5%). More than 80% are male.
- Education: Incoming young adults averaged a 7th grade reading level and 6th grade applied math level according to TABE testing.
- Racial/Ethnic Identity: 49% Latino, 12% Asian, 11% Black, 11% White/Caucasian, and 15% multiracial (with 2% other or unknown).
- Public Assistance: 90% are receiving public benefits, such as MassHealth, SNAP (food stamps), or cash assistance.
- Other Systems Involvement: Nearly 80% have been involved in the child welfare system in the past, and one-third had been adjudicated in the juvenile justice system.