Building a Workforce Readiness Model for Older Adults: An Examination of the AmeriCorps Seniors Workforce Development Program

Project Summary

With increasing life expectancy and longevity, combined with concerns of financial insecurity, older adults are remaining in the workforce longer or re-entering the workforce in later life. However, despite these shifts, many older adults face barriers in accessing employment. To address these challenges, AmeriCorps Seniors has launched the Senior Workforce Development Senior Demonstration Project (SWD SDP) to incubate successful models of workforce development that pair community service with education, training, and mentorship to help older adults secure sustainable long-term employment. The UMaine Center on Aging and the University of Maine Consortium for Aging Policy Research and Analysis (CAPRA) will carry out a three-year mixed methods study of the seven inaugural programs funded across the U.S. under the SWD SDP initiative. Using principles drawn from the Practical, Robust Implementation and Sustainability Model (PRISM) of implementation science, the research will entail:

  • Annual surveys
  • In-depth site visit interviews and focus groups
  • Learning community engagement
  • Secondary data analysis to identify the core, scalable, program elements that bolster older adult workforce development.

This study is guided by a national advisory committee of experts in the field of aging, workforce development, and older adult advocacy.

Study findings will identify effective older adult workforce development strategies that are not only consistent across settings but also responsive to local contexts.

Learn more about the AmeriCorps Seniors Workforce Development Program

View the list of Workforce Development Program grantees and programs

WFD Year One Research Timeline

Brief Project Summary Handout

Project Updates

Project updates are issued quarterly. View linked updates below for more detail. 

First Project Quarterly Update – April 2024

Project Publications and Presentations


Tips for Recruiting Older Workers

This tipsheet covers strategies for recruiting older workers based on a research literature review.

Project Staff

Advisory Committee

This project is guided by an expert Advisory Committee that provides input and guidance on research and project activities. Click here to view a list of Advisory Committee members.

Funding Acknowledgement

This material is based upon work funded by the Office of Research and Evaluation at AmeriCorps under Grant No. 22REAME001 through the National Service and Civic Engagement research grant competition. Opinions or points of view expressed in this document are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official position of, or a position that is endorsed by, AmeriCorps.


If you have questions about the project, please contact Mary Lou Ciolfi, Project Director, at