A 2-3 year experience that provides a paid job, career credentials, and college courses while still in high school.

UpSkill is a modern youth apprenticeship program that offers students the chance to discover career interests and pathways they cannot learn in the classroom and employers the opportunity to grow their workforce. Serving as the intermediary organization, ROI facilitates this program with high schools, employers, and higher education partners in the Indiana Uplands.

UpSkill provides a 2-3 year opportunity for both the student and the employer. Participating students gain paid employment with on-the-job and related classroom instruction. ROI provides support with student applications, interviews, placement, trainings, and ongoing guidance.

ROI had the opportunity to speak with six UpSkill students about their experiences working and learning in the Indiana Uplands.

How does it work?

Students are identified in their sophomore year in high school and participate in interviews. After being selected by employers, they begin their journey in their junior year with a 10-12 hour a week placement. In their senior year, students build up to 15-20 hours per week, which can lead to full or part-time employment, advanced training, or college coursework in the third year.

Potential Career Pathways


Automation & Robotics

Electrical Engineering

Mechanical Design & Technologies

National Security
& Defense


Engineering Technologies

Acquisition & Logistics



Medical Device

Production Technologies

& IT

Information Technology

Human Resources

Finance & Marketing

How is this different from an internship?

UpSkill is a longer experience for both the student and the employer that provides a multi-year placement and supporting instruction for a specific occupation. Activities at the worksite include on-the-job training and exposure to career possibilities. Additional training includes opportunities that align with industry requirements.

ActivitiesJunior YearSenior YearPost Graduation
At The Worksite10-20 hours
per week
15-20 hours
per week
Full or part
Additional TrainingIndustry recognized
Industry recognized
Advanced training
or college coursework

Which schools are participating?

  • Barr-Reeve High School
  • Bloomington Academy of Science & Entrepreneurship
  • Bloomfield High School
  • Brown County High School
  • Eastern Greene High School
  • Edgewood High School
  • Loogootee High School
  • Mitchell High School
  • North Lawrence Career Center
  • Orleans High School
  • Owen Valley High School
  • Shoals High School
  • Washington High School

The schools assist in recruitment, academic/career pathway alignment, monitoring, and scheduling. Each student also has a mentor that provides support throughout the UpSkill program.

Interested students are encouraged to fill out the UpSkill Interest Form:

Which employers are participating?

  • City of Bloomington Parks & Rec
  • Diamond Stone Technologies
  • FiveStar Technology
  • German American Bank
  • Graber Post Building
  • Indiana Safety & Supply
  • Ivy Tech
  • Mainstream Fiber
  • PRD
  • Regional Opportunity Initiatives
  • Rel-Micro
  • Richland Bean Blossom Schools
  • RTC Communications
  • SAIC
  • Smithville Communications
  • Stone City Products
  • TexaCon & Bedford Limestone Suppliers
  • VET Environmental Engineering

More employers will be signing on as we grow. Interested employers can contact ROI for information on how to participate.

For more information, please contact ROI at (812) 287-8116 or upskill@regionalopportunityinc.org.

Use this form https://forms.gle/uN1uJB7oLDGJtHbM9 or Scan the following QR Code:

Recent UpSkill News