Connecticut Wins $24M Grant for Workforce Development

08.07.2022
Economy

Connecticut is set to receive a $23.9 million grant to upskill, reskill, and improve regional sector partnerships in the state. 

It is part of a federal investment in workforce training across the country. 

The Office of Workforce Strategy is among 32 workforce training partnerships chosen by the U.S. Department of Commerce to receive funds from the American Rescue Plan. 

The projects should expand the country’s workforce and increase labor participation. 

Connecticut’s focus is growing the workforce in the manufacturing, healthcare, information technology, and biomedical industry. 

“This is a large sum of money that will go directly to workforce efforts,” CBIA government affairs associate Ashley Zane said. 

Strengthening Sectoral Partnerships Initiative

The OWS Strengthening Sectoral Partnerships Initiative will build on a newly developed Regional Sector Partnership program. 

The plan is two-fold – grow the RSP, and train and place people into quality jobs. 

Businesses and more than 250 stakeholders in education, workforce development, and economic development lead the 10 RSPs.

CT-Regional-Partnerships-080522
Source: OWS

Each has a focus on a specific industry and purpose of growing the workforce pipeline. 

“This program differs from previous efforts because it brings industry professionals to one table, one project with specific regional focuses,” Zane said.

“Historically it has been one town versus another, one industry versus another.”

Large employers in the state, including Electric Boat, Lockheed Martin, Yale New Haven Health and Hartford HealthCare committed to hiring more than 2,000 employees as part of the RSP development. 

Funding Expansion

Officials within OWS said they will leverage state, regional, and local investments to augment the grant, including state bond and federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act funding.

Connecticut also received $70 million from the federal American Rescue Plan Act, which jump-started the CareerConneCT short-term training program.

“The investment will be used for reskilling employees at a low to no cost to the employee,” Zane said. 

“This will eliminate a major barrier to entry into a new career and increase the eligible labor pool for employers.”

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