Ricco Williams of Euclid, Ohio, never finished high school, but recently enrolled in a free tutoring program to prepare for the GED exam.
Ricco Williams of Euclid, Ohio, never finished high school, but recently enrolled in a free tutoring program to prepare for the GED exam. - 
Listen To The Story
Marketplace

A report to be published later this month by the nonprofit Social Science Research Council estimates that, in the U.S., there are about 4.5 million young adults in their late teens and early 20s who are neither in school nor working. Researchers sometimes call this group of people "disconnected" or "disengaged" youth. The social and economic consequences of that disengagement are very real for places such as Cuyahoga County, Ohio.

According to the Cleveland-based nonprofit Youth Opportunities Unlimited, for each disengaged youth, the value of lost wages, lost tax revenue and added spending on social services, comes to about $44,000 dollars a year.

Ricco Williams, a young father living with his mom in the city of Euclid, recently signed up for Youth Opportunities Unlimited tutoring. He says he hopes to eventually get a job as a truck driver.

“I think the best compliment I can give is not to say how much your programs have taught me (a ton), but how much Marketplace has motivated me to go out and teach myself.” – Michael in Arlington, VA

As a nonprofit news organization, what matters to us is the same thing that matters to you: being a source for trustworthy, independent news that makes people smarter about business and the economy. So if Marketplace has helped you understand the economy better, make more informed financial decisions or just encouraged you to think differently, we’re asking you to give a little something back.

Become a Marketplace Investor today – in whatever amount is right for you – and keep public service journalism strong. We’re grateful for your support.