Governor’s program to help Hoosiers earn extra money is getting additional funding


FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – A program created by Governor Eric Holcomb that allows Hoosiers to receive free training in high-demand fields is receiving additional funding. Individuals who complete a short-term certificate through the program see an average wage gain of $500/month.

Indiana has been granted an additional $25 million to put towards the Rapid Recovery for Better Future initiative.

This initiative was announced back in early June to help get Hoosiers back to work who were laid off during the COVID-19 pandemic. The CARES Act provided $50 million of funds. This gave the state the opportunity to add additional resources for folks who were receiving new training to move into areas of high demand and high wage jobs; in addition of providing employers with support to up-skill or re-skill current employers or train new workers.

“So, we’ve analyzed where we have high demand, where we have good wages, and have made sure that we have training align to those opportunities,” said PJ McGrew, Governor’s Workforce Cabinet executive director. “Those are the areas we fund through the workforce ready grant program and the employer grant program.”

This effort started in 2017 but made some changes during the pandemic with the CARES Act funds. According to McGrew, the initiative is doing so well that two weeks ago the additional funding was announced.

“Because we have done a couple of things with this effort making sure that we have training that is directly aligned to our in-demand occupations that is one assurance knowing the success we have had in previous years,” McGrew said. “The median wage gains for people going through the workforce ready grant program is about $6,400 annually. And for our employers that are taking advantage of our employer training is $5,000 annually.”

McGrew told WANE 15’s Briana Brownlee that there are about 800 occupations identified through the state and what makes this program so successful is the focus of aligning opportunities to the correct training.

The sectors for the workforce ready training are:

  • IT and Business
  • Advanced manufacturing
  • Transportation and Logistics
  • Health and Life scientist
  • and Building and Construction

The sectors for the employer training are:

  • IT and Business
  • Advancement and manufacturing
  • Transportation and Logistics
  • Health and Life Science
  • and Building and Construction
  • Agriculture

Small and mid-sized businesses are primarily targeted for this effort. McGrew said that 55% of the companies have fewer than 50 employees.

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