Governor Wolf: New Funding Will Help Break Barriers for Employment in Philadelphia

April 24, 2019

Harrisburg, PA – Today, Governor Tom Wolf announced the approval of new funding for Community College of Philadelphia to support the Pathways to Advanced Manufacturing job training program. The program will prepare participants for entry-level employment in advanced manufacturing through classroom and technical skills instruction. The grant will come from Governor Wolf’s Manufacturing PA initiative.

“The Community College of Philadelphia’s manufacturing job training program is one of the best examples of what we want to accomplish with our Manufacturing PA initiative,” Governor Wolf said. “Not only do we move our economy forward by helping manufacturers close the workforce gap, but most importantly, we provide job opportunities for the populations who need it the most.”

The grant will provide $200,000 to Community College of Philadelphia to create the Pathways to Advanced Manufacturing job training program, which will provide new job opportunities for youth, low income individuals, citizens with disabilities, ex-offenders, and other unemployed or underemployed populations. Through the program, participants will earn an OSHA 10 certification and have the opportunity to earn five more nationally-recognized credentials.

The college will partner with area manufacturers to provide participants work-based learning opportunities and assist with employment placement. Partners include Packaging Progressions, Coilplus, HPT PHARMA, Computer Components, Electro Soft, Empire Abrasive Equipment Co., Weber Display and Packaging, and Piasecki Aircraft Corporation.

“We are excited to receive this important grant from the commonwealth to build the talent pipeline for manufacturers in Philadelphia and Southeastern Pennsylvania,” said Dr. Donald Guy Generals, President of Community College of Philadelphia. “This support allows the college to grow and enhance its advanced manufacturing offerings and provide the opportunity for Philadelphians to gain industry-recognized skills across the manufacturing spectrum to help them gain employment and the ability to earn family-sustaining wages. We are grateful to Governor Wolf for his investment in the college and this important sector to our region’s growth.”

“For many people in Philadelphia, securing a good, family-sustaining job in manufacturing can be complicated by barriers to employment – whether it be their age, disability status, income level, or prior criminal record,” said Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney. “I commend Community College of Philadelphia for tackling this problem head-on, and I thank the Wolf Administration for supporting this vital program that will open up more opportunities for Philadelphia’s workforce.”

The Pennsylvania Manufacturing Training-to-Career grant is designed to provide funding for training programs to help unemployed and underemployed individuals, as well as those with barriers, to gain the skills they need to gain employment in the manufacturing sector. Eligible applicants include technical and trade schools, universities, and nonprofit organizations that develop new and innovative training programs and partner with two or more manufacturers.

The Training-to-Career grant is part of Governor Wolf’s Manufacturing PA initiative that was launched in October 2017. This initiative ensures that training leads not simply to any job, but to careers that provide higher pay and opportunities for advancement. Working with DCED’s strategic partners, including Industrial Resource Centers (IRCs), Pennsylvania’s colleges, universities, technical schools, and non-profit organizations, this initiative fosters collaboration and partnerships to accelerate technology advancement, encourage innovation and commercialization, and build a 21st century workforce.

In the 2019-2020 Executive Budget, Governor Wolf proposed the new Statewide Workforce, Education, and Accountability Program (SWEAP) to provide workforce development opportunities for Pennsylvanians from birth to retirement. SWEAP will expand access to early childhood education, increase investments in schools and educators, and further partner with the private sector to build on the PAsmart initiative. Through SWEAP and PAsmart, the governor is calling for an additional $4 million to help Pennsylvania manufacturers train workers and $6 million to expand career and technical education for adults.

For more information about the Wolf Administration’s commitment to manufacturing, visit the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) website or follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and YouTube.

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