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Bank of America Graduates New Welfare-To-Work Class; America/Works Trainees to Begin Careers as Full-Time Bank Employees

Submitted by: Bank of America Corporation

Categories: Community Development

Posted: Dec 26, 2002 – 11:00 PM EST


Dec. 26 /CSRwire/ - LOS ANGELES,CA - Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) today graduates and hires its 13th class of trainees participating in America/Works, a collaborative initiative that has helped thousands of individuals move from poverty to self-sufficiency.

The training program is the result of a highly effective alliance made up of Bank of America, Exult Recruiting Solutions, Goodwill of Southern California, the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) and the Los Angeles County Office of Education (LACOE).

"The America/Works program is successful because all partners are committed to it success and our graduates truly desire to move from poverty and dependency to where they take control of their outlook and opportunity," said Bank of America Senior Vice President and Business Executive-Operations Joyce Runyan.

"America/Works instills pride in its trainees and provides immense benefits to local communities. Bank of America is grateful to have this important addition to its workforce."

The graduate class underwent 12 weeks of training covering skills improvement in communications, typing and 10-key adding machines. The program also includes an introduction to banking, as well as classroom and work experience on-the-job training in cash vault, proof, lockbox, foreign currency and other bank operations.

Bank of America guarantees a job to all graduating trainees and today's graduates will start work next week. Goodwill and HACLA recruit and prescreen candidates for each class session, while LACOE provides the instructors. In addition to committing to hire graduates who meet the company's hiring criteria, Bank of America provides the space, equipment, part of the curriculum, the work experience and involves recruiters from Exult and hiring managers from the bank in the classroom training. Goodwill, HACLA, and LACOE provide funding for the training.

Goodwill and HACLA also provide retention services, which include case management, transitional support services (childcare, transportation, clothing, etc.) and job coaching if required.

The Bank of America - America/Works workforce development initiative was launched in 1998 to provide training and career path opportunities for persons on public assistance. Nationwide, Bank of America has trained and placed more than 6,000 graduates in positions with the bank and other companies. Bank of America operates America/ Works program in 24 major urban areas across the country.

Graduates of the Bank of America program become full-time workers in career-path jobs that start off at an average of $10 an hour and offer critical benefits including health-care insurance, subsidized childcare and retirement plans.

Nationally and during the past three years, Bank of America has hired an average of 150 people a month from public assistance, with an average retention rate of 89 percent.

Bank of America is committed to hiring individuals on welfare, persons with disabilities, homeless veterans, youth at risk, the working poor and low-income seniors. The Bank of America Foundation also provides grants to support 95 job-training programs across the United States. National strategic partnerships with national organizations like Goodwill help in the development of local programs like this one.

America/Works was recognized by the U.S. Dept. of Labor in 2000 as one of 18 Best Practices in the U.S. among its funded programs. It also received Goodwill's "Large Employer of the Year Award" in 2001.

One of the world's leading financial services companies, Bank of America is committed to making banking work for customers and clients like it never has before. Through innovative technologies and the ingenuity of its people, Bank of America provides individuals, small businesses and commercial, corporate and institutional clients across the United States and around the world new and better ways to manage their financial lives. The company enables customers to do their banking and investing whenever, wherever and however they choose through the nation's largest financial services network, including approximately 4,400 domestic offices and 13,000 ATMs, as well as 30 international offices serving clients in more than 150 countries, and an Internet Web site that provides online banking access to 4 million active users, more than any other bank.

Bank of America stock (ticker: BAC) is listed on the New York, Pacific and London stock exchanges. The company's Web site is www.bankofamerica.com. News, speeches and other corporate information may be found at www.bankofamerica.com/newsroom.

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