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Business North - The Daily Briefing - Business Newspaper Online
New grant is designed to help close skills gap
The Wisconsin Fast Forward program is making grants available to support employer-led worker training
Information about the grants can be obtained from 2-4 p.m. on Tuesday at the WITC-Superior conference center and and from 2-4 p.m. Thursday at WITC-Ashland in room 306.
Shelly Harkins, from the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development's Office of Skills Development will provide information on the recently released second round of Wisconsin Fast Forward business grants and details about the application process. Wisconsin Fast Forward will make up to $15 million in grants available to support employer-led worker training.
“This is a fantastic opportunity to adapt to market conditions by adding instructional capacity where employers have the greatest needs,” WITC President Bob Meyer said in a news release. “This is one solution that will help address the ‘skills gap’ that we are facing in the region, state and nation.”
The Department of Workforce Development's new Office of Skills Development is administering the program. This second round of grants focuses on:
* Healthcare and related occupations
* Information technology occupations
* Manufacturing occupations
* Transportation, logistics, and distribution occupations
* Financial services occupations
* Construction trades and related occupations
* Wisconsin small businesses
Grant applicants can be a single business, a consortium of businesses, or a business/businesses in partnership with local workforce development boards and/or economic development organizations. Applicants may want to consider engaging local workforce and economic development organizations to develop a consortium. The collaborative effort helps to ensure that applications result in successful, sustained training programs.
“The funds will be used to reduce our wait lists at the technical colleges and put people to work faster,” Meyer said. “In our case, the funds would help us add capacity to train more welders and machinists.”
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