Houston YouthBuild
YouthBuild Graduation

Laying the Foundation,
Framing Our Future


YouthBuild is a national program for opportunity youth funded by the U.S. Department of Labor. SER Jobs in Houston, Texas administers YouthBuild Houstonfor the Greater Houston area. This program is for young adults ages 16 to 24.The goal of YouthBuild Houston is to provide a host of diverse opportunities & skills to youth that will prepare them for adulthood, creating the next generation of leaders!


Reasons to join YouthBuild Houston

YouthBuild Houston sets participants up for success to pursue their education and provides skills needed to succeed in today’s evolving workforce. From on-the-job skills in high-demand industries to real-life resources and support, what participants gain in YouthBuild equips them to shape their future. 

  • Take classes to earn your GED

  • Learn skills with on-the-job training and nationally recognized credentials in construction, phlebotomy, or customer service.

  • Receive opportunities to attend college & career readiness workshops and learn about a variety of post-secondary pathways.

  • Gain financial literacy, leadership, workforce development, and life skills

  • Receive support like mental health services, transportation, financial, food, and clothing assistance, as well as many other resources.

  • Give back to the Houston community by building homes for those in need.

  • Develop leadership skills to help you tackle the next stage of your life!


YouthBuild Houston Eligibility

To be eligible for YouthBuild Houston, participants must:

  • Be ages 16 to 24
  • Dropped out of high school
AND fall into one of the following categories:
  • Considered low-income (Medicaid, SNAP, TANF, SSI, etc.)
  • Currently or previously involved with juvenile justice system
  • Currently or previously in CPS or foster care
  • Parenting youth (have a child(ren) or are the guardian for a sibling)
  • Be a migrant
  • Be the child of an incarcerated parent


How to join the YouthBuild Houston program

Step 1. APPLY: Complete the YouthBuild Houston application. 

Step 2. INFO SESSION: You will interview with a YB staff member. 

Step 3. ELIGIBILITY FORMS + DOCUMENTATION: Submit all required documents. 

Step 4. MENTAL TOUGHNESS WORKSHOP: Attend required 2-week orientation. 

Step 5. ENROLLMENT + ACCEPTANCE: All 4 steps must be completed to be considered for acceptance into the YouthBuild Houston Program. 

*YOUTHBUILD HOUSTON applications will reopen January 2024.


Julian’s Story: Stepping Up to Inspire

Julian’s Story: Stepping Up to Inspire

Role Model, Mentor, and Inspirational Big Brother “Today, I understand the role I play as the older brother of seven,” said Julian, “if you asked me that a few months ago, I wouldn’t have been able to express what that looked like or meant to me.” Julian M., who was...

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Maria’s Story: Stepping Out of Her Comfort Zone

Maria’s Story: Stepping Out of Her Comfort Zone

In late 2018, Maria B. drove by SERJobs Workforce Opportunity Center and saw a sign offering YouthBuild services. Fortunately, she stopped to see how SER could help and change her life. Maria had experienced personal challenges, dropped out of high school, and was in...

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Daniel’s Story

Daniel’s Story

Daniel W. had a clear career goal set. SER supplied the resources and encouragement to get him there. After his adoptive father abandoned his mother, Daniel W. hated seeing his mother struggle. So before starting high school, Daniel dropped out to work to help support...

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Ready to Take Control of Your Future?

Have questions? Email youthbuild@serjobs.org


Is YouthBuild Houston a school?

YouthBuild Houston is not a public school and is not covered by TEA open-enrollment policies.

YouthBuild Houston is a Department of Labor program that combines education and job training. This includes GED classes.

Is there a fee associated with this program?
No, YouthBuild Houston is a program that does not cost or require any fee to enroll. As long as you are an active participant, you are eligible to receive services through this program.
Is programming offered in Spanish?
All programming is in English.
How long will it take for me to graduate?
The average student graduates 6-12 months to attain their GED, though it may vary depending on the academic skill level when you enroll.
What is the difference between a high school diploma and GED?

The GED is a total of 4 tests that cover the topics of mathematics, social studies, science, and english / language arts.

Both will qualify you to attend college and trade schools or join the military.

There are a few things to consider when deciding between a High School Diploma and a GED, such as the length of time to complete, long-term goals, and pre-placement test scores.

Participants are the best at determining their educational path. Applicants should speak to YouthBuild Houston staff to determine the best course of action to meet their goals.

Why does the application ask about justice involvement?
YouthBuild Houston is committed to supporting youth who have had experience in the criminal justice system. Therefore, applicants with violent felonies convictions are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
Can I do more than one training track at a time?
Participants will choose one training track. Once they have received their trade certification, they can move on to another.
What does the day look like?

4 days of GED & training.

Is housing provided?
YouthBuild Houston does not provide housing for participants. However, we can provide resources that can assist with housing and other pressing needs.
Am I required to have a state issued ID?

Yes, participants are either required to have a state-issued ID or a passport. A birth certificate and social security card are required as well. School ID’s are accepted at the beginning of enrollment for those ages 16 & 17. But members will eventually need a state ID to sit for GED exams.

Do I have to be a US citizen?
No, but you must have right to work documentation (Visa/Residency Card).