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Obama Administration Awards Nearly $500 Million in First Round of Grants to Community Colleges for Job Training and Workforce Development

Labor secretary and Education under secretary, joined by Dr. Jill Biden, announce funds to train workers for new careers and provide more job opportunities

Contact:  
Joshua Lamont, Labor Department Office of Public Affairs, (202) 693-4661, Lamont.Joshua.R@dol.gov
Sara Gast, Education Department Press Office, (202) 401-1989, sara.gast@ed.gov


Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis and Under Secretary of Education Martha Kanter today announced nearly $500 million in grants to community colleges around the country for targeted training and workforce development to help economically dislocated workers who are changing careers. The grants support partnerships between community colleges and employers to develop programs that provide pathways to good jobs, including building instructional programs that meet specific industry needs.

This installment is the first in a $2 billion, four-year investment designed in combination with President Obama's American Jobs Act to provide additional support for hiring and re-employment services to increase opportunities for the unemployed.

"Making it possible for unemployed Americans to return to work is a top priority of President Obama's. This initiative is about providing access to training that leads to real jobs," said Secretary Solis. "These federal grants will enable community colleges, employers and other partners to prepare job candidates, through innovative programs, for new careers in high-wage, high-skills fields, including advanced manufacturing, transportation, health care and STEM occupations."

Today's announcement represents an initial round of community college and career training funds, which are being awarded to 32 grantees. The U.S. Department of Labor is implementing and administering the program in coordination with the U.S. Department of Education.

"The president knows that building a well-educated workforce is critical to reviving and strengthening the American economy," said Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. "These grants will help community colleges and businesses work together to give students the skills they need to compete for good jobs in growing industries."

Dr. Jill Biden, a community college professor, joined the Labor and Education departments in celebrating the goals of the program, and the hard work of the grant applicants and recipients.

"The grants announced by the departments of Labor and Education today are another clear demonstration of the Obama-Biden administration's commitment to our community colleges and their vital role in fueling the American economy," she said. "Today's announcement is an important deliverable from last year's White House Summit on Community Colleges and one that will provide gateways to opportunities for many Americans."

The initiative complements President Obama's broader agenda for every American to have at least one year of postsecondary education and will help to reach his goal for America to have the highest proportion of college graduates in the world by 2020. Every state will receive at least $2.5 million for community college career training programs through this initiative. States without a winning submission named in this round are being contacted by the program's administrators to develop a qualifying project that will immediately receive $2.5 million.

Grants support partnerships between community colleges and employers to develop programs that provide pathways to good jobs. Efforts include building instructional programs that meet specific industry needs, strengthening technology-enabled learning, and allowing students and workers to access free learning materials online. Importantly, every community college grantee has at least one employer partner – a sponsor that has jobs available and needs trained workers to fill them. Through these grants, schools will be able to expand their capacity to put more people into high-quality jobs and start new careers in fields ranging from advanced manufacturing and transportation to health care and STEM – science, technology, engineering and math.

The program also is designed to have a lasting impact on higher education, emphasizing the use of evidence in program design, collection of student outcome data and conducting evaluations to build knowledge about which strategies are most effective in placing graduates in jobs. These investments, combined with the president's proposals in the American Jobs Act, will help individuals to receive the skills they need to work in high-demand sectors and provide additional pathways back to work for the unemployed.

These grants are part of the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training initiative, for which the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act included a total of $2 billion over a four-year period.

Editor's note: A brief list of grantees follows, with more complete information online: http://www.dol.gov/opa/media/press/eta/eta20111409fs.htm

ORGANIZATION NAME CITY STATE APPLICANT TYPE AFFECTED STATES FUNDING AMOUNT
University of Alaska Anchorage Anchorage AK C Alaska 2,500,000
George C. Wallace State CC - Hanceville Hanceville AL C Alabama 9,500,000
Northwest Arkansas Community College Bentonville AR C Arkansas 14,794,422
West Hills College Lemoore Lemoore CA C California 19,993,050
Community College of Denver Denver CO C Colorado 17,256,881
Delaware Technical & Community College Dover DE S Delaware 4,994,200
North Georgia Technical College Clarkesville GA S Georgia 2,546,186
University of Hawaii - Honolulu Community College Honolulu HI C Hawaii 24,653,118
Northeast Iowa Community College Calmar IA C Iowa, Minnesota 
and Wisconsin 12,695,959
College of Lake County Grayslake IL C Illinois 19,366,381
Washburn University of Topeka Topeka KS C Kansas 19,619,450
Quinsigamond Community College Worcester MA C Massachusetts 20,000,000
Anne Arundel Community College Arnold MD C Maryland, Arkansas, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Tennessee and Washington 19,730,281
Alpena Community College Alpena MI S Michigan 2,835,000
Northland Community and Technical College Thief 
River Falls MN S Minnesota 4,794,337
Ozarks Technical Community College Springfield MO C Missouri 19,982,296
Robeson Community College Lumberton NC C North Carolina 18,835,604
United Tribes Technical College Bismarck ND C North Dakota and Montana 18,947,635
Great Bay Community College Portsmouth NH C New Hampshire 19,974,792
Raritan Valley Community College Somerville NJ S New Jersey 4,620,265
Kingsborough Community College Brooklyn NY C New York 19,860,087
Cincinnati State Technical and Community College Cincinnati OH C Ohio, District of Columbia, Illinois, Minnesota, Kentucky, and Texas 19,613,306
Clackamas Community College Oregon City OR C Oregon 18,679,289
Community College of Philadelphia Philadelphia PA C Pennsylvania 20,000,000
Community College of Rhode Island Warwick RI S Rhode Island 3,405,023
Florence-Darlington Technical College Florence SC C South Carolina 19,984,039
Motlow State Community College Lynchburg TN S Tennessee 3,291,515
Collin County Community College District McKinney TX C Texas, Arizona, Illinois, Massachusetts, Utah and Washington 19,998,974
Tidewater Community College Norfolk VA C Virginia 24,107,474
Community College of Vermont Montpelier VT S Vermont 2,500,000
Community Colleges of Spokane/Spokane Community College Spokane WA C Washington 20,000,000
Mountwest Comm. and Techni. College (Marshall) Huntington WV S West Virginia 5,000,000


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