What is JAG?

The Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) program is a state-based, national non-profit organization dedicated to helping high school students of promise who have experienced challenging or traumatic life experiences achieve success through graduation.

JAG Indiana Success

Jagsuccess

JAG is a resiliency-building workforce program that helps students learn in-demand employability skills and provides a bridge to post-secondary education and career advancement opportunities.

Currently there are 135 JAG programs available throughout Indiana, click here for a complete listing. JAG students receive adult mentoring while in school and one year of follow-up counseling after graduation.

Indiana’s program consistently graduates approximately 95% of participants and many students choose to continue their education after high school. JAG program is funded through grants provided by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.


The education and training provided through JAG Indiana has prepared thousands of young Hoosiers for success after high school and opened doors to positive education career and personal outcomes that will impact their lives forever.

Governor and JAG National Board Chair Eric J. Holcomb

JAG Indiana celebrated 10 years of success in 2017

Governor Eric Holcomb and several legislators attended to meet students, celebrate their success across the state, and learn more about JAG Indiana.

Check out this video highlighting the event:

History of JAG Indiana

2006–2007

  • Governor Mitch Daniels implements the JAG model to address the growing dropout crisis in the state.
  • JAG Indiana serves 217 students at 12 in-school programs statewide.

2007–2008

  • JAG Indiana serves 355 students at 13 in-school programs.
  • The first cohort of 57 students earn their High School diplomas and complete JAG program. 65% go on to full-time work and 46% pursue post-secondary training.

2008–2009

  • JAG Indiana grows extensively to 35 in-school programs.

2009–2010

  • Expansion continues as JAG Indiana grows to 58 in-school programs.
  • The first out-of-school dropout-recovery programs are formed in southwest Indiana.

2010–2011

  • Out-of-School model expands to southeastern Indiana and Indianapolis.

2011–2012

  • Expansion continues as JAG Indiana grows to 59 in-school programs.

2012–2013

  • JAG Indiana continues to operate 59 in-school programs that serve 1939 students.
  • Follow-up services were provided to an additional 1089 students.
  • North Central Indiana adds the out-of-school model.
  • JAG Indiana achieves a statewide graduation rate of 90.1%.

2013–2014

  • Governor Mike Pence and State Legislators approve state funding of $12M to expand JAG Indiana over two years.
  • JAG Indiana expands by 47 new in-school programs for a total of 103 Multi-Year and Alternative Education programs and operates 12 out-of-school programs.

2014–2015

  • JAG Indiana operates 106 in school and alternative school programs and 12 out-of-school programs.
  • JAG Indiana achieves the highest graduation rate in state’s history-93% (class of 2013-2014).

2015–2016

  • Governor Mike Pence and State Legislators approve state funding of $11.6M to support JAG Indiana over the next two years.
  • JAG IN awarded 4 Ken Smith National Scholarships, the highest amongst the 32 JAG states. JAG Indiana receives Statewide 5 of 5 Award.

2016–2017

  • JAG Indiana celebrates 10 Years at Indiana Statehouse with keynote and recent JAG National Board appointee, Governor Eric Holcomb.
  • State Legislators approve $16M in state funding to support JAG Indiana over the next two years.
  • JAG Indiana achieves highest graduation rate in state’s history; 95% for the Class of 2015-2016.

2017–2018

  • Governor Eric Holcomb is elected JAG National Board Chair.
  • Governor Eric Holcomb announces JAG Indiana will expand to an additional 250 schools over the next five to seven years.
  • JAG Indiana begins two College Success Program models through a partnership with Ivy Tech Community College and Strada Education Network.
  • JAG Indiana is awarded three Ken Smith National Scholarships and two Ken Smith Leadership Scholarships.
  • JAG Indiana hosts National Board Meeting in Indianapolis and presents its Strategic Growth Plan.

The JAG Indiana Team

Regional Staff

Name Phone E-mail Counties Covered
Michelle Truswell 574-772-6882 Mtruswell@gotoworkonenw.com Jasper, Lake, LaPorte, Newton, Porter, Pulaski, and Starke
Jennifer Owens 219-308-6984 jowens@gotoworkonenw.com Elkhart, Fulton, Kosciusko, Marshall, and St. Joseph
Rachel Bryant 260-760-2984 rachelbryant@mybrightpoint.org Adams, Allen, Dekalb, Grant, Huntington, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben, Wabash, Wells, and Whitley
Mellisa Leaming 756-807-0888 mleaming@tap.lafayette.in.us Carroll, Cass, Clinton, Fountain, Frankfort, Howard, Miami, Montgomery, Tippecanoe, Tipton, and White
Sara Beth Meyers 317-818-0846 smeyers@workonecentral.org Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks, Johnson, Madison, Morgan, and Shelby
Greg Lee 812-249-8585 glee@vinu.edu Clay, Parke, Putnam, Sullivan, Vermillion, and Vigo
Jennifer Robinson 812-360-4906 jnrobinson@vinu.edu Brown, Daviess, Greene, Lawrence, Martin, Monroe, Orange, and Owen
Kristal Biehle 812-569-1776 kristal@rivervalleyresources.com Bartholomew, Dearborn, Decatur, Franklin, Jackson, Jefferson, Jennings, Ohio, Ripley, and Switzerland
Jennifer Tyra 812-941-6423 jtyra@workoneregion10.com Clark, Crawford, Floyd, Harrison, Scott, and Washington
Jody Robinson 812-719-7404 jrobinson@workonesouthwest.org Dubois, Gibson, Knox, Perry, Pike, Posey, Spencer, Vanderburgh, and Warrick
Beth Bowling 317-713-7614 bbowling@employindy.org Marion

State Administrative StafF

Name Position E-mail
Leslie Crist Associate Chief Operating Officer Workforce Programs and JAG National State Lead lcrist@dwd.in.gov
Bart Doan Associate Director Youth Initiatives bdoan@dwd.in.gov
Laura Hannum Marketing Coordinator lhannum@dwd.in.gov
Brianna Morse Director Youth Initiatives and JAG National Lead Bmorse1@dwd.in.gov
Christine Shaffer Statewide Trainer cshaffer@dwd.in.gov
Laura Wheeler Program Manager – Professional Development & Data Analyst lwheeler@dwd.in.gov

Contact Us

General Information

General Information

Jobs for America’s Graduates
Indiana Department of Workforce Development
10 North Senate Avenue, Room 203
Indianapolis, IN 46204
P: (317) 233-6815
JAGIndiana@dwd.in.gov

Connect with JAG on Social Media

Department of Workforce Development Resources