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Governor Wolf Announces $4.7 Million for Job Training by Businesses Seeking Skilled Workers

January 11, 2021

Governor Tom Wolf today announced nearly $4.7 million in PAsmart Next Generation Industry Partnership grants were awarded to bolster workforce development across Pennsylvania.

“Employers need skilled workers now more than ever,” said Governor Wolf. “My administration created PAsmart to help close the skills gap and allow more people to get the education and training they need to get better paying jobs. Strengthening job and skills training continues to be a priority and the 28 grants announced today further enhances that goal.”

The Next Generation Industry Partnership grants bring together multiple employers in the same industry to collectively provide targeted job training so that students, workers, and job seekers get the skills for good jobs in those industries.

“Programs like the Next Generation Industry Partnership are helping Pennsylvania be at the forefront of the economic changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Department of Labor & Industry Acting Secretary Jennifer Berrier. “By aligning businesses in the same industry to create training programs, we can provide Pennsylvania workers with the skills they need for today’s job opportunities while helping multiple businesses develop a strong candidate pool.”

The Wolf Administration has invested $88 million through the PAsmart since 2018. The initiative provided $28 million to expand job training through registered apprenticeships and industry partnerships and $60 million to support STEM and computer science education in hundreds of schools across Pennsylvania.

This funding is in addition to $6.5 million in PAsmart grants awarded to expand apprenticeship job training. Those grants support registered apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship through ambassador networks, build a diverse talent pipeline while expanding non-traditional registered apprenticeships and pre-apprenticeships and build diversity within the construction and building trades.

The following PAsmart grant winners and amounts were awarded. To view full details, visit PAsmart Next Generation Industry Partnership Grants.

Central PA Healthcare Partnership (Centre, Clinton, Columbia, Lycoming, Mifflin, Montour, Northumberland, Snyder, and Union – $233,800)

The partnership’s action teams are focusing on advocacy efforts, increasing coordination with the K-12 system, and developing a workforce pilot program to align with the goals of Pennsylvania, regional, and local plans.

Construction Industry Partnership (Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, and Butler – $250,000)

The partnership’s objectives are developing a first source hiring model for the region, making a stronger construction industry pipeline, and developing a long-term sustainability plan.

Financial Services Industry Partnership (BankWork$) (Allegheny – $250,000)

The partnership is focusing on developing a stronger and more diverse financial services industry worker pipeline with increased outreach capacity. They are also developing a stronger and more diverse youth pipeline in the financial services industry and retaining and upskilling workers in financial services.

GR8T Manufacturing: Northwest PA Next Generation Partnership (Clarion, Crawford, Erie, Forest, Lawrence, Mercer, Venango, and Warren – $168,946)

The partnership is focusing on breaking down silos in their community by facilitating communication among businesses in their partnership under the idea of Business to Business (B2B) Connections. Some other areas of focus are promoting manufacturing careers and branding the region.

Greater Philadelphia Healthcare Partnership (Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia – $45,000)

This partnership is transitioning to the Next Generation Industry Partnership model and is focused on engaging employer partners through this transition. Other priorities include convening education, economic and workforce development partners, developing a formal employer driven action plan, and positioning the partnership for long-term sustainability.

Greater Reading Advanced Manufacturing Next Generation Industry Partnership (Berks – $116,455)

Priorities of this partnership include developing local manufacturing talent pools and promoting both manufacturing and the region to attract talent to the industry. The partnership is prioritizing consistency across Berks County strategic plans, including alignment with economic development strategies.

Healthcare Connect (Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia – $250,000)

The partnership is focused on addressing three primary challenges within the regional healthcare system, including a shortage of qualified workers, a lack of transportation options, and a lack of business-critical skills, or what some employers describe as “soft skills.” Action teams have been developed to address these challenges.

Healthcare Industry Partnership (Allegheny – $45,000)

The partnership has initiated work in the healthcare industry through engaging with sector businesses as well as nonprofits and community organizations. Three primary goals have been identified by businesses, including leveraging and expanding youth programming for healthcare careers, developing registered apprenticeship programs in the healthcare industry, and establishing multi-employer recruitment and retention strategies.

Hospitality and Retail (Allegheny – $45,000)

The partnership has worked to engage with sector businesses and community organizations to develop participation. Common goals among business partners include developing effective recruitment and retention strategies for entry-level staff and developing viable pathways to get youth involved in the hospitality and retail industries.

Innovative Technology Action Group (ITAG) (Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia – $250,000)

This partnership has been operating for more than twenty years and transitioned to a Next Generation Industry Partnership in 2018. Business identified goals include continued expansion of the employer base in the partnership and the increased engagement of public partners.  Action teams have been formed around the priorities of incumbent worker training, increasing diversity and inclusion in the sector, youth career exploration, and improving tech job seeker resources.

Made in Central PA (Centre, Clinton, Columbia, Lycoming, Mifflin, Montour, Northumberland, Snyder, and Union – $250,000)

This partnership is focused on three primary business driven priorities including marketing the Central PA region, promoting business-to-business networking, and developing a skilled workforce. Business leaders are working to increase collaboration with public partners and building better connections with schools to create a pipeline of workers with the foundational and technical (STEM) skills they need in their companies.

Manufacturing Alliance of Chester and Delaware Counties (Chester and Delaware –$220,000)

This partnership is focused on improving the workforce via incumbent worker training, attracting new people and youth to the manufacturing sector, and increasing business improvement processes. Over the past several years, the partnership has coordinated events that have engaged business across the region and connected those businesses with schools and other public partners.

Manufacturing Industry Partnership (Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, and Butler – $45,000)

This partnership is engaging with businesses, nonprofits, and community partners as it builds towards formally launching. Several goals of the participating businesses have been identified, including pipeline development for workers, developing registered pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship programs, and establishing multi-employer recruitment and retention strategies.

North Central PA Building and Construction Next Gen Sector Partnership (Cameron, Clearfield, Elk, Jefferson, McKean, and Potter – $214,424)

This partnership launched in May 2019 and has engaged with multiple employers, economic development agencies, and educational representatives. The partnership’s priorities include educating pre-high school students on trades and skilled-labor occupations through co-op work experiences and businesses partnering with educational partners to increase career awareness.

North Central PA Healthcare and Social Assistance Next Gen Sector Partnership (Cameron, Clearfield, Elk, Jefferson, McKean, and Potter – $213,222)

This partnership launched in May 2019 after convening employers, economic development partners, and educational representatives. Action teams were formed around the priorities of increasing technology to attract younger workers, educating younger individuals around advancements in healthcare opportunities, and overall improvements in recruitment and retention of employees.

North Central PA Manufacturing Next Gen Sector Partnership (Cameron, Clearfield, Elk, Jefferson, McKean, and Potter – $244,444)

In May 2019 this partnership transitioned to a Next Generation Industry Partnership through a launch that included businesses and public partners. Business driven priorities for this partnership include promotion of the manufacturing industry and employment opportunities within the industry, the implementation of a signing day for students participating in co-op programs, and the development of technical training for employers, including creation of one-stop resources for employers and guidance on how to develop registered pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship programs.

Northern Tier Diversified Manufacturing Next Gen Industry Partnership (Bradford, Sullivan, Susquehanna, Tioga, and Wyoming – $28,000)

This partnership is focused on creating a strategic plan and developing training opportunities for workers in the manufacturing sector. By connecting employers to resources available throughout the region, including PREP, Engage!, and Northern Tier Apprenticeship, this partnership will work to meet the emerging needs of manufacturers in the Northern Tier.

Pennsylvania Steel Alliance (Allegheny, Beaver, Fayette, Greene, Washington, and Westmoreland – $145,000)

The mission of this partnership is to promote Pennsylvania’s steel industry and supply chain through public policy, education, and outreach, to grow the industry, creating new jobs and economic prosperity in the region and throughout the state. Priorities include economic impact research, public outreach, and educational initiatives related to career pathways.

Smart Energy Initiative of Southeastern PA (Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Lancaster, Lehigh, Montgomery, Northampton, Philadelphia – $220,000)

This partnership relaunched as a Next Generation Industry Partnership in 2017, focusing on the promotion of growth of the “smart” energy industry by providing comprehensive workforce and economic development services to partnering companies. Over the past several years, the partnership has focused on worker training, career exploration and awareness, increasing public-private partnerships, and will continue to build upon these efforts.

Southcentral PA Advanced Manufacturing Next Gen Industry Partnership (Adams, Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Juniata, Lebanon, Perry, and York – $250,000)

This partnership’s action teams are focused on promoting manufacturing careers, improving training opportunities for middle-skill/technical occupations, and facilitating business-to-business connections to exchange best practices.

Southeastern PA Manufacturing Alliance (SEPMA) (Bucks, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia – $250,000)

This partnership was formed in 2007 prior to transitioning to the Next Generation Industry Partnership model in 2018. Priorities include sourcing qualified talent and upskilling the incumbent workforce, developing business marketing and sales opportunities for future growth, and business partnership engagement and sustainability.

Southwest Corner Building and Construction Industry Partnership (Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Washington, and Westmoreland – $250,000)

Formed in 2005, this partnership transitioned to a Next Generation Industry Partnership in 2019.  Priorities include improving community awareness by promoting career opportunities in the building and construction sector, developing worker recruitment strategies and expanding enrollment in trade apprenticeship programs, increasing diversity in the building and construction workforce.

Transportation and Logistics Industry Partnership (Allegheny, Armstrong, and Beaver – $250,000)

This partnership launched in 2018 and has set four goals for the partnership including a stronger youth pipeline, development of employer-led training programs for in-demand positions, development of a multi-employer retention strategy, and increased alignment of priorities and funding across the partnership.

Tri-County Healthcare Industry Partnership (Armstrong, Butler, and Indiana – $150,000)

Originally formed in 2002, this partnership transitioned to the Next Generation Industry Partnership model in 2018. Priorities of the partnership include career promotion within the sector, worker training for healthcare careers, and coordinating the efforts of businesses, education, economic development, and workforce development.

Tri-County Manufacturing Industry Partnership (Armstrong, Butler, and Indiana – $150,000)

Formed in 2005, this partnership launched as a Next Generation Industry Partnership in 2019.  Priorities include career promotion and awareness activities through employer-based job shadowing, internships, and career fairs, development of pre-apprenticeship programs, and coordinating business needs with the efforts of education, economic development, and workforce development.

Tri-County Technology Industry Partnership (Armstrong, Butler, and Indiana – $45,000)

This partnership was formed in 2006 and is actively working to transition to the Next Generation Industry Partnership Model. Goals of the partnership include strengthening information technical and communication services in the region, attracting other industry sectors to the region by providing a strong foundation of IT and communication service support, and coordinating efforts between businesses and public partners.

West Central Healthcare Next Gen Partnership (Lawrence and Mercer – $45,000)

This new partnership is focused on bringing together businesses within the healthcare and social services sectors to identify priorities and leverage public sector resources within the Next Generation Industry Partnership model. The partnership is focused on improving healthcare and overall health, particularly in a rural region of the state.

Westmoreland-Fayette Logistics and Transportation Industry Partnership (Fayette and Westmoreland – $45,000)

This is a new partnership focused on addressing the needs of the regional transportation industry sector. Initial meetings have indicated a need for stronger logistics and transportation infrastructure within the region, and specifically the need for additional Commercial Driver licensed employees. Additional initial priorities include the need for incumbent worker skill development and business access to capital to assist with business expansion and growth.

 

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