State receives $3.3 million for high-demand job training

The Connecticut Department of Labor received more than $3.3 million in federal funding to train unemployed workers for jobs in high-demand industries, according to a June 27 press release from Gov. Dannel Malloy's office.

The $3,392,350 Job-Driven National Emergency Grant, awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor, is focused on training residents for jobs that need to be filled, such as those in areas of engineering, information technology and advanced manufacturing," states to the press release.

Gov. Malloy said the grant is "geared toward providing our residents with new on-the-job training opportunities, where individuals draw a paycheck while working and learning new skills."

"The focus will be to partner with employers and create more employment related to STEM industries  science, technology, engineering and math  because these are the jobs that need to be filled, and these are the jobs that will pay well, offer excellent career opportunities, and help strengthen our overall economy," he said.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the grants are designed to help states expand work-based learning strategies and potentially increase employment and earnings outcomes.

Not only will the grant be used to train and prepare unemployed workers, states the press release, it will also help "expand or create new employer partnerships to increase the number of registered apprentices in well-paying manufacturing occupations, such as quality control, CNC, and tool and die machining."

According to the press release, the goal is to expand on-the-job training programs to manufacturing companies since most apprenticeship programs are currently found within the construction industry.

"Nationwide and in Connecticut, the long-term unemployed are experiencing the toughest time finding news jobs. This grant will focus on helping these individuals, as well as others that are seeking new employment, gain the skills they need to move into jobs that employers are trying to fill," said Gov. Malloy.The on-the-job training programs will be developed by the Connecticut Labor Department in partnership with the Eastern Workforce Investment Board, the Northwest Workforce Investment Board and Workforce Alliance.

The U.S. Department of Labor awarded a total of $154,757,547 in grants to 32 states, Puerto Rico and the Cherokee tribal nation. The grants were funded by the Workforce Investment Act Dislocated Worker National Reserve fund, according to the governor's press release.

In order to better service dislocated workers taking part in the grant program, as well as federal job training programs in general, according to the press release, grant recipients will also receive up to $175,000 in additional funding for activities in one or more of the following areas:

  • Increasing consumer access to training outcomes and information.
  • Developing more effective electronic employment tools.
  • Expanding employer engagement.
  • Enhancing customer and employer satisfaction.