The Summit Difference - Summit Academy OIC

About Summit Academy

Located in the Heritage Park neighborhood of North Minneapolis, Summit Academy OIC is an accredited, nonprofit Career and Technical Education (CTE) Institute located in North Minneapolis.

Summit offers specializations and industry certifications for in-demand careers in Healthcare, Information Technology (IT), and Construction through twenty-week accredited programs, delivering academic rigor alongside marketable skills and connections to employers. Summit’s workforce-driven model also offers accelerated 10-week GED training. Over 1,000 low-income students enroll at Summit Academy from across the seven-county metropolitan area. Summit’s mission is to empower individuals to develop their ability to thrive and to become contributing citizens in their community and economic drivers of the State of Minnesota.

In 1996, two established training and job placement programs joined forces: the Twin Cities Opportunities Industrialization Center and Two or More. The merger created Summit Academy OIC, a vocational training center focused on giving low-income adults access to skills for the jobs of today and tomorrow. Embracing a comprehensive community focus, we located ourselves in the heart of North Minneapolis, where we remain today.

Our Mission Statement

We exist to assist individuals in developing their ability to earn and to become contributing citizens in their community.

We support the development of self-sufficiency in every person, regardless of background, economic status, or level of ability. We strengthen the community by preparing individuals to assume their roles as workers, parents, and citizens.

Learn more about Summit Academy OIC’s philosophy, strategy, mission, vision, and values.


Summit Academy OIC is an accredited institution by the Council on Occupational Education.

This training program was funded in part by a grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration. The training was created by the grantee and does not necessarily reflect the official position of the U.S. Department of Labor. The Department of Labor makes no guarantees, warrantees, or assurance of any kind, express or implied, with respect to such information on linked sites and including but not limited to, accuracy of the information or its completeness, timeliness, usefulness, adequacy, continued availability, or ownership. This training remains the property of Summit Academy. Council on Occupational Education: 7840 Roswell Road, Building 300, Suite 325, Atlanta, GA 30350. Phone: 770-396-3898; Fax 770-396-3790.

4 Star Rating

Summit Academy OIC is proud to be recognized as a four star charity by Charity Navigator.

America’s premier independent charity evaluator. Charity Navigator works to advance a more efficient and responsive philanthropic marketplace by evaluating the financial health of America’s largest charities.

Our Philosophy

Our region faces workforce challenges that disproportionately impact communities of color. Minnesota is already experiencing a significant drop in labor force growth. According to the State Demographer, projections indicate only 0.1% labor force growth from 2020 to 2025 and zero labor force growth into 2045. In fact, by 2045 the state will need an additional 326,000 new workers to maintain a 0.5% labor force growth rate.  More urgently, from 2016 to 2020 the state will need an additional 49,700 new workers (on top of the projected 33,400 workers entering the workforce during that time period) in order to continue a 0.5% labor force growth rate over the next five years.

The Twin Cities region is also home to some of the greatest racial disparities in employment and education compared with the other metropolitan areas across the country. Communities of color face many barriers to participating in the workforce, including, but not limited to:

  • Failing public school systems: School systems which fail to graduate around 50% of students of color and then fail them again in subsequent GED programs which have poor completion rates, particularly following changes to the exam in 2014.
  • Lack of opportunity for education and training: until July 2014, a 30% cap on the number of MFIP participants that could pursue education or job training.
  • Limited access: a lack of social networks that support entry into the economic mainstream.
  • ‘Soft-skills’ policies: systems focused on providing support services and soft skills as opposed to industry-recognized hard skills that enable individuals to obtain good jobs.

All of these factors are exacerbated as our workforce growth slows to a halt and the composition of the workforce itself becomes more diverse. As noted by our State Demographer, “failing to better develop the talent of all residents is squandering needed human capital. Some of the poorest performing groups are also the fastest growing among Minnesota’s population.”

We simply cannot afford to leave unskilled, underutilized communities of color on the sidelines anymore. Developing the human capital of these communities is our opportunity. Summit Academy OIC is a community leader in growing a skilled, diverse workforce that will help to ensure stability for our regional economy while connecting low-income people with the tools they need to escape poverty.