Pennsylvania Awards $2.4 Million to Help Schools and Employers Prepare Students for In-Demand Careers

January 16, 2020

Governor Tom Wolf today announced more than $2.4 million has been awarded to local workforce development boards (LWDBs) to help businesses and school districts work together to better prepare students for in-demand careers across Pennsylvania.

“These investments will give students the technical training they need to get good-paying jobs when they join the workforce,” said Governor Wolf. “Building business and education partnerships will help ensure our students have the skills they need to succeed in today’s economy, while simultaneously creating new generations of highly-skilled workers for Pennsylvania employers.”

The Department of Labor & Industry (L&I) awarded $2.4 million for Business-Education Partnership (BEP) grants to 19 LWDBs. The partnerships will connect schools, employers, and students to provide career-related experiences and opportunities through soft-skills development, internships, workplace shadowing, and career mentoring, all with the goal of preparing students for good local jobs.

L&I Secretary Jerry Oleksiak today highlighted the $100,000 grant award for the Delaware County Workforce Development Board (DCWDB) at a press conference in Media, where he was joined by Educational Data Systems Inc. (EDSI), Delaware County Community College, and local workforce development and education representatives. Oleksiak then visited the College’s nursing and manufacturing simulation labs where students receive hand-on training on industry relevant equipment.

“Last year the commonwealth funded BEP grant activities to serve more than 20,000 individuals across the commonwealth,” said Oleksiak. “These strategic partnerships benefit employers by educating tomorrow’s workforce and helping them become more job-ready, while providing students with a solid first work experience to put them squarely on the path to success.”

The DCWDB, in partnership with EDSI, will use BEP funds to expand the Two-Generation Career Exploration and Education Program to serve adults and high school students residing in Delaware County who are interested in exploring manufacturing or health care careers. Now in its sixth year, the program’s goal is to provide activities for both students and their parents or guardians to better prepare them to join the workforce in high-priority occupations.

“The Business-Education Partnership grant provided the opportunity for EDSI, the Chamber of Commerce, local school districts, the Delaware County Community College and employers to work in a true collaborative spirit to positively impact youth in our county,” said EDSI Regional Director of Operations Roe Falcone. “This collaboration provided youth with the opportunity to learn about the health care and manufacturing fields through career panels, a career awareness day and industry specific boot camps.”

The following 19 LWDBs received Business-Education Partnership grants:

  • Berks County Workforce Development Board $110,955
  • Bucks County Workforce Development Board $118,200
  • Central Pennsylvania Workforce Development Board $121,080
  • Chester County Workforce Development Board $150,000
  • Delaware County Workforce Development Board $100,000
  • Lackawanna County Workforce Development Board $158,915
  • Lancaster County Workforce Development Board $100,000
  • Luzerne-Schuylkill Workforce Development Board $100,000
  • North Central Workforce Development Board $191,498
  • Northern Tier Workforce Development Board $131,006
  • Northwest Workforce Development Board $120,000
  • Philadelphia Workforce Development Board $137,952
  • Pocono Counties Workforce Development Board $100,000
  • South Central Workforce Development Board $200,000
  • Southern Alleghenies Workforce Development Board $ 77,387
  • Southwest Corner Workforce Development Board $100,000
  • Three Rivers Workforce Development Board $161,958
  • Tri-County Workforce Development Board $100,000
  • West Central Workforce Development Board $150,000

The Business-Education Partnership grants from L&I are funded at 100 percent through federal money made available from the Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act. For more information about the Business-Education Partnership awards, visit the Department of Labor & Industry.

For more information about pursuing an education and career in Pennsylvania at any stage of life, visit PAsmart.

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