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Apply for AmeriCorps Serve VISTA Program: Reentry Workforce Development VISTA Office of Reentry Part

The Mayor's Office of Civic Engagement and Volunteer Service is now accepting applications from qualified candidates to join the 2020-2021 Serve Philadelphia VISTA Corps. VISTAs serve full-time for a year working on systems level change in City government. Our administration, led by Mayor Jim Kenny, has invested in a multipronged approach—focused on stabilizing households, increasing skills and incomes, and investing in education— to lift residents out of poverty and to break the cycle for future generations. The work of Serve VISTAs is an important part of moving the City’s anti-poverty strategy forward. Applications close April 30th.

Project Goal

Returning citizens experience many barriers that keep them poor by limiting access to employment/career pathways to economic stability. Philadelphia needs better cross-sector collaboration to make appropriate resources and opportunities available. The Reentry Workforce Development VISTA will help develop the capacity of reentry stakeholders (City depts, criminal justice agencies, Reentry Coalition providers, formerly incarcerated Philadelphians) & workforce development stakeholders (City depts/task forces, training/education institutions, service providers, & employers) to implement cross-system initiatives to connect more returning citizens to workforce dev. opportunities including education, training, job placement, & career pathways.


The Reentry Workforce Development VISTA will research best practices, liaise with the Office of Workforce Development and the Reentry Coalition’s Employment Subcommittee to gather and disseminate information, and contribute to strategy development to launch the Office of Reentry Partnerships’ workforce development efforts.

Key Activities

  • Research best practices and practices in other jurisdictions for 1) employer engagement, 2) industry partnerships, and 3) workforce development services/program referral networks in the context of reentry.

  • For each of those three areas, liaise with the Office of Workforce Development and the Reentry Coalition’s Employment Subcommittee to understand shared goals, gather and disseminate relevant information, and support the development of cross-system initiatives.

  • Identify related opportunities for training and capacity-building of stakeholders including City departments, criminal justice agencies, Reentry Coalition providers, formerly incarcerated Philadelphians) & workforce development stakeholders (City departments/task forces, training/education institutions, service providers, & employers).

Preferred Skills/ Experience

  • Assertive or charismatic, dynamic and motivated

  • Flexible and adaptable

  • Comfortable working independently, taking initiative and making decisions within the framework of established goals and guidelines – as well as working effectively with team members/ in groups • Strong interpersonal skills, comfortable with outreach and interaction with diverse agencies and organizations, and their representatives

  • Resourceful, strong problem-solving skills, and possess basic qualitative and online research skills

  • Knowledge of standard software applications (comfortable on a computer)

  • Able to analyze and synthesize information Communicate effectively in both oral and written forms with people with diverse backgrounds

What do Serve VISTAs do?

Each VISTA position is unique to the City department or initiative, but all Serve Philadelphia VISTAs build capacity. Capacity building activities can include, but are not limited to: • Creating tools, systems and guides like databases, policy briefs and marketing materials. • Generating resources through partnerships, volunteers and/or grant-writing. • Developing, organizing and/or assessing programs, events and/or meetings. • Supporting, establishing or strengthening cross-departmental and cross-sector partnerships.


  • Bachelor’s degree

  • US citizen or permanent resident*

  • Criminal background check (if accepted)

*See AmeriCorps VISTA FAQS for more info

Start date: July 20th, 2020 End date: July 20th, 2021 Term of Service: 1 year

Applications close April 30th 2020 11:59 PM Qualifications

Demonstrated interest in anti-poverty efforts, social justice and volunteerism.

Able to work and collaborate with diverse communities and stakeholders.

Strong organizational, time management and communication skills. • Open to new experiences and growth. Each individual VISTA position lists additional preferred qualifications that are relevant to that assignment.


  • Bi-weekly living stipend (approx. $542.22)

  • Segal Education Award ($6,195) or End of Service Award (approx. $1,800)

  • Relocating 50+ miles to serve: settling-in allowance of up to $750 and relocation travel allowance of $0.40/mile

  • Monthly SEPTA transportation pass (Zone 1)

  • Ten days of personal leave and ten days of medical leave

  • Healthcare Allowance or Health Benefit Plan

  • Loan Forbearance or Deferment for Federal Student Loans

  • +5 points on the City of Philadelphia’s Civil Service exam

  • Non-Competitive Eligibility (NCE) for federal jobs

  • Monthly professional development and team building

  • Valuable work experience and networking with local government and partners

The Serve Philadelphia VISTA Program is committed to diversity and inclusion. Minorities, women, individuals with disabilities and veterans are strongly encouraged to apply.

Apply now:

Questions? Call us: (215) 686-0823 or email us:

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