Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon Portland Community College

Steps to Success (TANF services)

The following programs are available only for individuals currently receiving TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) assistance.

Discovering Options
Women talking together

TANF participant profile: Limited or no work experience, poor job retention, multiple employment barriers.

Skill-building, career planning, and coaching. Presentations from knowledgeable, motivational guest speakers. Personalized résumé, cover letters, disclosure letters, mock interviews and life skills, master application completion.

English Language Learners

TANF participant profile: English language learners with an interest in gaining employment skills.

Employment-focused English language coaching, specialized résumé creation, one-on-one personalized program development, and personalized job development utilizing language translation services as needed.

Life Skills

TANF participant profile: Limited workplace skills and habits, barriers to daily living and decision making, and obstacles to relationship building.

Attend group and one-on-one support with career assessments; develop helpful workplace habits and social skills; research and improve skills to build self-esteem and feel better about yourself; practice positive self-talk; assess your skills and identify affirmations; develop problem-solving, decision-making, time management, budgeting, and parenting skills; identify resources; improve employment retention; improve your work-life balance; work on effective communication and interpersonal relationships; practice lifelong learning.

Job Search Orientation
Person getting help on a computer

TANF participant profile: Job-ready, current resume, recent work history.

Job search tools such as Master Application, social media, resume writing, job search motivation, empowerment, assessments, Oregon labor market info, current job listings, resources, referral, and how to complete job logs.

Career LaunchMan working on a computer

TANF participant profile: All skill levels interested in training and continuing education.

One week-long training-based course specifically designed to prepare participants for job training. Whether you have high school equivalency, an associate’s degree, or higher, Career Launch gives the tools, assessments, and resources (as well as PCC advisors and staff) to assist in the transition to training. A day on a PCC campus is included for a truly immersive experience!

On-Ramp to TradesHVAC Training

TANF participant profile: All skill levels interested in training and continuing education.

A two-week course to prepare participants to transition into pre-apprenticeship or apprenticeship programs. Participants will build skills to succeed in their apprenticeship program and will get support with applying to the PCC Pre-Apprenticeship program at Swan Island, or any trades program of their choosing. Participants will be eligible to receive a recommendation letter upon successful completion of the program.

Steps to Success
Group of three women talking and laughing together

The PCC Steps to Success program provides comprehensive employment readiness and internship placement services for individuals receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) through the Department of Human Services (DHS). We offer two types of internships: Work Experience (unpaid) and Jobs Plus (paid).

Jobs Plus

TANF participant profile: Job-ready but unfruitful job search, needing additional job-related skills.

Paid employment in a wide variety of public, private, and not-for-profit workplaces, learn valuable workplace skills, 6-month duration, often leading to direct hire.

Jobs Plus interns are full-time (between 30-40 hours a week) and considered temporary workers subject to the same rules and company policies as other staff. Employers who hire through the Jobs Plus program will receive partial reimbursement for the first six months of employment and can hire interns permanently at the end of the assignment.

Work Experience

TANF participant profile: Limited or no recent work experience, in need of good work reference.

Volunteer internship opportunities in a wide variety of public, private, and not-for-profit workplaces. Build skills, expand your experience, and gain references for the future.

Work Experience offers employers a great opportunity to meet staffing needs. Interns will work part-time (between 5-25 hours a week) in an unpaid position. This is a great opportunity for interns to develop new skills, gain recent work experience and develop professional references.

Benefits to employers
  • Pre-screening of interns to match skills and overall suitability to the worksite.
  • Ongoing support and coordination with worksite supervisors and interns.
  • Workers compensation coverage for interns during a Work Experience assignment.
  • Interns can be hired for regular positions within an organization with no employment fee.
  • Companies may qualify for the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) if the intern is hired.
  • Reimbursement of a portion of wages for the first six months in a Jobs Plus internship.
  • Employers can hire up to 10% of their staff through Jobs Plus.

Eligible interns are referred to the program by a DHS Family Coach (Case Manager). For more information regarding TANF, visit oregon.gov.

GED® test preparationGED student

TANF participant profile: All skill levels interest in training and continuing general education diploma.

Individualized assessment and placement, program exploration, and selection to meet individual needs. GED® preparation classes, tutoring, one on one coaching, practice exams, and final exam support and referral.

GED® is a registered trademark of the American Council on Education and may not be used without permission. The GED® and GED Testing Service® brands are administered by GED Testing Service LLC under license.

Vocational Training
Man looking through a book

TANF participant profile: Beginning-level education.

Training and continuing education to obtain higher-wage jobs, credentials, and certifications in support of achieving career goals. Program and career exploration, securing funding, internships, apprenticeships, and informational interviews.

Wellness Services

TANF participant profile: All skill levels experiencing employment barriers related to health and wellness.

Services for clients seeking support for mental health and wellness. Information about resources in the community is provided to address mental health or substance abuse issues for individuals and families.

PMWTC success story