DWD logo

Tony Evers, Governor
Caleb Frostman, Secretary

Department of Workforce Development
Secretary's Office

201 E. Washington Avenue
P.O. Box 7946
Madison, WI 53707-7946
Telephone: (608) 266-3131
Fax: (608) 266-1784
Email: sec@dwd.wisconsin.gov

Thursday, July 9, 2020
CONTACT: DWD Communications, 608-266-2722
On the Web: http://dwd.wisconsin.gov/news/
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On Twitter: @WIWorkforce

DWD Announces Wisconsin Fast Forward Grant Recipients

Grant funding will serve 25 businesses in Wisconsin and train 1,446 workers.

MADISON – The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) has awarded more than $2.5 million in Wisconsin Fast Forward (WFF) Industry Sectors Worker Training grants to 18 organizations to recruit and train job seekers and workers. This will result in unemployed workers being hired to fill vacant or new positions and underemployed workers and incumbent employees earning higher wages, being scheduled for more hours, and/or securing more permanent employment.

"DWD is a full-service workforce agency that not only handles unemployment claims but also invests in programs that help those who are unemployed find self-sustaining employment and incumbent workers see meaningful gains in quality of life," DWD Secretary Caleb Frostman said. "While working tirelessly to assist our state's unemployed access the benefits they deserve, through this round of WFF grants, DWD is funding effective training for those out of work and those looking to advance in their industry. Every job should pay a living wage that allows workers to cover their basic needs and invest in their future. The training provided through these Fast Forward grants can help ensure that reality by providing new, transferable skills for the unemployed and employed alike."

The WFF program is a state-funded grant program that provides employer-led worker training grants administered by the Office of Skills Development (OSD) at DWD.

For employees, Industry Sector Worker Training grants are designed to provide sustainable, short- and medium-term training and to place workers in positions that offer trainees long-term professional growth and economic opportunity. This training will assist with adding new individuals into the workforce and increasing wage growth for trainees.

For employers this grant opportunity encourages statewide economic growth by assisting employers to train workers and fill positions to meet critical needs for a skilled workforce, which is vital to economic development and community growth in Wisconsin. Employers partner with local or regional economic development organizations, workforce development boards, post-secondary institutions, nonprofit organizations, and private training providers.

Growth in both areas (employees and employers) will allow workers to have greater purchasing power, making them better able to support local businesses, invest in their communities, and create new and greater demand for goods and services, thereby providing new opportunities for businesses and entrepreneurs. This approach maintains a strong environment for private-sector job creation in Wisconsin through continued growth and expansion.

The grant announcement and request for applications was sent out earlier this year in February, prior to the COVID-19 public health emergency. This round's grant recipients are in four industries hit hard by the health emergency: construction, healthcare, manufacturing, and transportation.


DWD granted $152,942.03 to Milwaukee Community Service Corps. to provide training to 100 unemployed trainees as entry lever construction laborers. Trainees will receive OSDHA 10 certification, Forklift certification, PACT training, Wisconsin Lead Renovator certification, CPR/AED certification, as well as soft skills employment readiness training.

DWD issued a grant of $40,000 to Great Lakes Community Conservation Corps to train 40 unemployed individuals. Trainees will receive a customized Erosion Control Technician certificate comprised of multiple short courses for CDL, OSHA-10, Heavy Equipment Operation and Power Tools Use, and HAZWOPER (OSHA-40).

DWD granted $44,846.40 to IBEW Local 159 to train 50 incumbent workers from companies that are members of the local National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA). Trainees will receive five hours of training using a specially designed booth that will allow for hands-on training for electrician apprentices.


DWD issued a grant of $149,280 to Children's Hospital and Health System, which is partnering with Herzing University to provide medical assistant training to 16 incumbent workers. Trainees will receive training over 16 months and will receive a diploma upon completion and be eligible to achieve two different national credentials: Registered Medical Assistant and Certified Clinical Medical Assistant. Training involves on-line coursework and an externship at a Children's clinic.

DWD issued a grant of $399,375 to Wisconsin Health Care Association, which is contracting with training programs certified by the Department of Health Services to train and certify 500 unemployed individuals as certified nursing assistants (CNA) for placement in employment with participating Wisconsin nursing homes with their consortium. Trainees will receive 75 hours of instruction.


DWD issued a grant of $138,480 to Fox Valley Workforce Development Board, which is partnering with Multi-Color Corporation, Heartland Label Printers, Badger Tag & Label, Menasha Packaging-Preprint, TC Transcontinental, Outlook Group, New Manufacturing Alliance, and Fox Valley Technical College to train 49 incumbent workers. Training will cover Narrow Web Flexography Printing and Wide Web Flexography Printing.

DWD granted $178,062.95 to AO Smith Corporation, which is partnering with several training providers (lean Enterprise Institute, Celemi Insights, Definity Partners, CTI, and Franklin Covey) to train 121 incumbent workers. Training will cover new SAP technology that is replacing outdated software systems, lean and leadership management skills, forklift operation, general job safety, and on-the-job training.

DWD issued a grant of $21,473 to A to Z Machine Company, which is partnering with the Bay Area Workforce Development Board and the Leadership Development Center to train 16 incumbent existing workers. Trainees will develop skills in leadership, critical thinking and problem solving as they relate to their specific roles at the company.

DWD granted $332,460 to Alto-Shaam, which is partnering with Waukesha County Technical College to train 83 incumbent workers and 35 unemployed workers in advanced manufacturing technologies.

DWD issued a grant of $50,750 to Hastreiter Industries, which is partnering with NexGenCam, LLC to train 20 unemployed individuals and eight incumbent workers in advanced CNB machining/programming.

DWD granted $92,325 to SMC, which is partnering with CNC Solutions, LLC to train 36 incumbent workers. Trainees will develop skills in robotics and plastic simulation specifically in Moldflow. Instruction will be provided at SMC and at the Fanuc training site in Johnson Creek.

DWD issued a grant of $43,200 to Fusion Integrated Solutions, which is partnering with Werner Electric, Red Vector Solutions, PMEducate, Leanipd, PMI, Pdh-Pro, Learning Tree, Brain Filler, Midwest Renewable Energy Association, 360 Training, and Leica Geosystems to train 16 incumbent workers. Training will be in areas of controls engineer, project management, safety, 3D scanning, lean IPD, and wind & solar technologies.

DWD granted $18,000 to Aluminum Foundry of Wisconsin, which is partnering with ManageAssist to train 20 incumbent existing workers. Trainees will develop skills in lean manufacturing, management & leadership, and project management as it relates to their specific roles at the company.

DWD issued a grant of $20,000 to F.C. Dadson, which is partnering with ManageAssist to train 32 incumbent existing workers. Trainees will develop skills in lean manufacturing, management & leadership, customer service, and project management as it relates to their specific roles at the company.

DWD granted $50,594 to Trachte Business Systems, which is partnering with ManageAssist to train 37 incumbent existing workers. Trainees will develop skills in lean manufacturing, management & leadership, and project management as it relates to their specific roles at the company.

DWD issued a grant of $40,000 to Schunk Carbon, which is partnering with ManageAssist to train 33 incumbent existing workers. Trainees will develop skills in lean manufacturing, management & leadership, and project management as it relates to their specific roles at the company.


DWD granted $394,267.57 to WATCO Companies, which is partnering with Progress Rail, Pure Safety Group, Wisconsin Division of Motor Vehicles, American Railway Engineering & Maintenance-of-Way, Department of Workforce-Rock County, Wisconsin Manufactures and Commerce, Midwest Food Producers Association, and Wisconsin Paper Council to train 50 incumbent existing employees and 12 unemployed trainees. Training will consist of both classroom instruction as well as on-the-job training in areas related to hard skills needed in the rail industry.

DWD issued a grant of $399,414.26 to Veriha Trucking to train 146 unemployed and 22 incumbent workers. Training will consist of 61 hours of leadership skills for 22 transportation managers and seven weeks of classroom and on-the-road training for 146 unemployed individuals providing a firm foundation for employment in the trucking industry.

For more information, please visit http://wisconsinfastforward.com/wff_standard.htm