STATEHOUSE (July 27, 2020) – Indiana is temporarily expanding its successful Next Level Jobs program through Dec. 30 to include more job seekers and employers, according to State Rep. Matt Lehman (R-Berne).
Indiana is directing nearly $40 million from the federal CARES Act to expand the program's eligibility, offerings and funding caps for Workforce Ready Grants and Employer Training Grants.
Lehman, who supported the 2017 law establishing the Next Level Jobs program, said the new funding opens doors for more Hoosiers, especially those out of work due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"For some, now is the right time to skill-up or make a career change," Lehman said. "These grants provide opportunities for working-age adults to earn high-value certificates so they can land more secure, higher-paying jobs in industries that are experiencing growth. Tuition costs will be covered, and there are also benefits to local employers that invest in hiring and training Hoosiers."
More than $20 million of the CARES Act funding will allow a minimum of 10,000 additional Hoosiers to utilize the Workforce Ready Grant as the program temporarily expands:
In addition, the Employer Training Grant, administered by the Department of Workforce Development, will be temporarily expanded to support more businesses that train new employees, and upskill or reskill workers. The maximum amount of funding available to an employer increased from $50,000 to $100,000, and $5 million will specifically support minority-, women- and veteran-owned businesses.
Lehman said Hoosiers can find out more by visiting NextLevelJobs.org.
Since its inception, the Workforce Ready Grant has enrolled over 25,000 people in high-demand, tuition-free certificate programs, with over 13,300 Hoosiers completing a Workforce Ready-eligible certificate program. Individuals who have completed a certificate program have seen an average wage increase of $6,400 a year. The Employer Training Grant has served more than 530 employers and trained nearly 9,000 employees.
State Rep. Matt Lehman (R-Berne) represents House District 79,
which includes all of Adams County and portions of Allen and Wells counties.
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