FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 18, 2014
CONTACT: Laurel Patrick, (608)267-7303
Or DWD Communications, (608) 266-2722
Blueprint for Prosperity: Governor Scott Walker Announces $2.3 Million Grant to Train 160 Workers at Northcentral Technical College
Wisconsin Fast Forward grants help train more people for in-demand careers
Wausau – Governor Scott Walker today announced the award of nearly $2.3 million in Wisconsin Fast Forward grant dollars to Northcentral Technical College (NTC) to train up to 163 workers for in-demand fields. The award is part of $28 million in grants Governor Walker recently announced as part of his Blueprint for Prosperity initiative to help Wisconsin technical college train more than 4,900 workers for jobs that employers need to fill.
"As Wisconsin's economy continues to improve, and our unemployment rate reaches its lowest point since 2008, businesses need skilled workers to fill in-demand positions as they expand," Governor Walker said. "The Wisconsin Fast Forward program makes targeted investments in worker training that will develop the highly skilled, dependable, and talented workforce Wisconsin is known for."
The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) administers the grants, which add capacity to 100 programs at the state’s 16 technical colleges. Up to 4,908 additional students will be able to access training programs that cover key industry sectors including manufacturing, health care, transportation, construction and architecture, and education.
During a visit to the NTC campus, Governor Walker announced DWD's intent to award the technical college $2,264,812 to train 163 additional workers in the following high-demand areas:
- $799,037 to train 24 students to be diesel technicians.
- $994,842 to train 104 students in manufacturing.
- $470,933 to train 35 students in information technology (IT).
"We extend our deep appreciation to Governor Walker, Lt. Governor Kleefisch, Secretary Newson, and the Department of Workforce Development for their continued support of NTC and the Wisconsin Technical College System," said Northcentral Technical College President Lori Weyers. "These additional resources will allow us to continue to serve the needs of the businesses and learners in our District."
Governor Walker signed Act 139 into law in March 2014 as part of his Blueprint for Prosperity initiative following the strong bipartisan support of the State Legislature. The legislation allocated an additional $35.4 million in funds to the Wisconsin Fast Forward worker training program with a focus on three areas:
- Reduction of waits lists at Wisconsin technical colleges for high-demand fields;
- Collaborative projects between high schools, technical colleges, businesses, and other partners to increase opportunities for high school pupils to earn industry-recognized credentials; and
- Enhancing the employment opportunities for workers with disabilities.
Technical colleges submitted initial lists of programs for grant consideration earlier this year. DWD developed objective, data-driven measurement tools to validate wait lists for grant eligibility purposes, evaluate each technical college's funding request, make award decisions, and include accountability measures to protect taxpayers' investment.