Department of Workforce Development: Lt. Governor Kleefisch and DWD Secretary Allen announce $1.5 million in new short-term training program grants

CONTACT: DWD Communications, 608-266-2722
On the Web: http://dwd.wisconsin.gov/dwd/news.htm
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A total of five grant projects benefit up to 227 trainees and over a dozen employers

MILWAUKEE – Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch and Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) Secretary Ray Allen visited the Center for Self-Sufficiency today to announce $1.5 million in grant awards for five Advanced Manufacturing and Information Technology Short-Term Training program projects, benefitting up to 277 trainees and over a dozen employers.

“Thanks to Governor Walker, Wisconsin is more focused than ever on ways we can develop the talent needed to keep Wisconsin employers competitive in the US and the global economy,” said Lt. Governor Kleefisch. “DWD’s new Short-Term Training program is another valuable strategy to help hundreds of Wisconsin workers, including those facing a variety of barriers, develop the skills for and access good-paying Advanced Manufacturing and Information Technology jobs.”

Wisconsin has invested over $200 million over the past four years and $140 million in current biennial budget to support workforce development under Governor Walker’s vision and leadership.

DWD’s Short-Term Training program enhances the state’s commitment by providing necessary job skills training in Wisconsin’s growing advanced manufacturing and information technology industries to help individuals with employment barriers qualify for or obtain employment, including ex-offenders, incarcerated individuals, long-term public assistance recipients, people with disabilities, veterans and young adults ages 18-24.

“I am honored to join Lt. Governor Kleefisch today to announce these Short-Term Training program grants, which will help workers successfully transition into the workforceand ensure that no talent is left on the sidelines,” Secretary Allen said. “Efforts to provide these important individuals with the necessary job skills training is a critical step in helping our growing Advanced Manufacturing and Information Technology industries in Southeast Wisconsin and beyond fill current and future job openings.”

The Center for Self-Sufficiency is among the five grantees that received an intent to contract grant award totaling $272,385 to train as many as 36 ex-offenders for advanced manufacturing careers in partnership with the Milwaukee Area Technical College.

“We are very appreciative of the vision and commitment from Department of Workforce Secretary Allen and his staff, calling for innovative partnerships that allow us to address the workforce disparities present for many of our citizens returning from incarceration,” Carl Wesley, President and CEO of the Center for Self-Sufficiency, said. “It is projects like this that provide opportunities for the most abandoned individuals in our city and provide them access to the training and resources needed to gain livable wages and the hope and motivation to strive toward a good life.”

State Rep. Jason Fields, who co-chairs the Task Force on Minority Unemployment with Lt. Governor Kleefisch, said the Short-Term training grants will furnish talent to help support the new high-tech manufacturing and technology ecosystem that Wisconsin is leading the way nationally to develop, thanks to employers like Foxconn choosing Wisconsin to locate and expand.

“Thanks to the Department of Workforce Development, individuals with employment barriers will now have additional opportunities to access specialized training and supportive services needed to obtain great jobs in our region’s growing Advanced Manufacturing and Information Technology industries,” Rep. Fields said. “These grants provide a necessary and valuable service, helping fill job openings and change lives.”

In addition to the Short-Term Training program grants, DWD highlighted a recently contracted Wisconsin Fast Forward grant award to the Wisconsin Regional Training Partnership totaling more than $80,000 to train up to 25 individuals for entry level construction industry jobs in partnership with the Operating Engineers – Local 139.

A complete list of DWD Short-Term Training Program grants is available online.

Learn more about current WFF grant opportunities and awarded projects at: http://www.wisconsinfastforward.com/

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