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Workforce Investment News Archive

Vice President Biden, Secretaries of Education and Labor Announce Recipients of $450 Million of TAACCCT Job-Driven Training Grants; Resources Awarded to Nearly 270 Community Colleges Partnering with More than 400 Employers Nationally
Sep 29, 2014
Vice President Biden, Secretary Thomas E. Perez, and Secretary Arne Duncan have announced the winners of $450 million in job-driven training grants going to nearly 270 community colleges across the country. The funding is part of the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) competitive grant program, which is co-administered by the Department of Labor and Department of Education.

The grants will provide community colleges and other eligible institutions of higher education with funds to partner with employers to expand and improve their ability to deliver education and career training programs that will help job seekers get the skills they need for in-demand jobs in industries like information technology, health care, energy, and advanced manufacturing.

Building on the strategies advanced in the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, these types of job-driven training partnerships were also identified in the Vice President's job-driven training report released in July as an important way to successfully prepare and place workers in jobs that pay a middle class wage.

Round 4 TAACCCT Fact Sheet / Listing of Awardees

Department of Labor Awards $50.7 Million to 11 Organizations through the Workforce Investment Fund
Sep 25, 2014

The U.S. Department of Labor today announced $50,744,449 in Workforce Innovation Fund grants to improve federal job training programs. The grants will be used to deliver services more efficiently, facilitate cooperation across federal and state workforce programs and funding streams, and expand partnerships with specific employers or industry sectors to develop programs that reflect current and future skill needs.

Eleven grants, ranging from $2.9 million to nearly $12 million were awarded today to a combination of state workforce agencies and local workforce investment boards in the second round of competition under the Workforce Innovation Fund. Approximately $171 million in grants were awarded in the first round, which included $147 million for 26 grants in July 2012 and $24 million for two Pay for Success grants in October 2013.

The goals of the Workforce Innovation Fund are closely aligned with the Obama administration's job-driven training principles. Grantees will work with local and regional employers, industry groups and their state commerce and development agencies to strengthen public-private partnerships. In addition, all grants require an evaluation component that will help significantly increase the body of knowledge about the most effective strategies in workforce development.

News Release / Listing of Awardees

SBA Announces 50 Winners of the First Growth Accelerator Fund Competition; Kauffman Foundation Releases Case Study on
Sep 16, 2014
The U.S. Small Business Administration has recently announced, after reviewing more than 800 applications, the 50 winners of the first Growth Accelerator Fund competition. The recipients represent 31 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. The accelerators come from a broad set of industries and sectors - from manufacturing to tech start-ups to farming as well as a focus on a diversified range of demographic groups.

Winners were selected by a panel of seven judges who are experts in entrepreneurship, investing and business plans both inside and out of the federal government. The judges reviewed the applications and pitch videos submitted by the 100 finalists in the competition.

Each organization will receive a cash prize of $50,000 from the SBA. In accepting these funds, the accelerators will also be committing to quarterly reporting for one year. They will be required to report metrics such as jobs created, funds raised, startups launched and corporate sponsors obtained among other pieces of information. This will allow the SBA to create a useful database of accelerators and their impact, and to develop long-term relationships with the startups and constituents in these innovative and entrepreneurial communities.

The purpose of the competition was to draw attention and funding to parts of the country where there are gaps in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. There are entrepreneurial activities taking place in all 50 states, but some are better supported by private sector ecosystems than others.

News Release / Listing of Winning Applications

The Kauffman Foundation has released a study which examines connections and relationships that help communities maximize job-creating potential of young and growing companies. "Examining the Connections within the Startup Ecosystem: A Case Study of St. Louis," released on September 10 by the Foundation, reports on the elements necessary for creating a nurturing entrepreneurial environment. Most important, it found, are the connections and relationships that pull support organizations, new entrepreneurs and experienced entrepreneurs together in a way that helps founders get the mentoring and information that most benefits the company at its particular stage of development.

Click here for the new release. Click here for access to the study.

Also see:

OSHA Awards Safety and Health Grants under the Susan Harwood Training Program; Seeks Nominations for Federal Advisory Council on Occupational Safety and Health
Sep 11, 2014
The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration today awarded $10,687,000 million through the Susan Harwood Training Grant Program to 78 nonprofit organizations, including community- and faith-based groups, employer associations, labor unions, joint labor-management associations, and colleges and universities. The program provides grants to fund education and training for workers and employers to help them recognize workplace safety and health hazards, implement injury and illness prevention measures, and inform them of their rights and responsibilities.

The Susan Harwood Training Grant Program supports safety and health training programs that educate workers and employers in industries with high injury, illness and fatality rates; underserved youth; limited English proficiency and other vulnerable workers; and small businesses. The award categories for fiscal year 2014 grants were: Targeted Topic Training, including Training and Educational Materials Development, and Capacity Building Pilot and Capacity Building Developmental, including one-year follow-on grants to recipients from Fiscal Year 2013.

The training grant program is named in honor of Susan Harwood, a former director of the Office of Risk Assessment in OSHA's former Directorate of Health Standards, who passed away in 1996.

News Release / Listing of Grantees, Type of Grant, and Amounts

Through a notice in the September 9 FEDERAL REGISTER, the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health invites interested individuals to submit "rolling" nominations for membership on the Federal Advisory Council on Occupational Safety and Health (FACOSH), and announces the new procedures for the "rolling" nominations. This notice also announces the appointment of six individuals to serve on FACOSH.

Federal Agencies to Host Live Stream Dialogue on Career Pathways (September 23); Invite Broad Participation from the Public Workforce System
Sep 9, 2014
On behalf of the U.S. Departments of Labor, Education, and Health and Human Services, the public workforce system is invited to participate in the National Dialogue on Career Pathways to be held on September 23, 2014. This important event will bring national attention to the critical role career pathways systems play in creating a strong economy where workers can gain the skills needed for good jobs and employers can hire workers with the skills they need. The meeting will be available via live stream broadcast at

The meeting will feature messages from our federal agency leaders on the importance of career pathways as a job driven training strategy. During the day's meeting, you will also hear presentations and panel discussions from some of the nation's leading state and local area career pathways practitioners providing insight into their experiences and promising practices, ranging from cross-agency partnership building to innovative strategies to help students, workers, and businesses. In addition, there will also be thought-provoking discussions with leading policy experts, business leaders, and philanthropists on the future of career pathways.

As you know, Vice President Joe Biden recently released his Ready to Work Report and outlined critical strategies, like career pathways initiatives, to help Americans progress in their careers, obtain new skills training and earn credentials. Career pathways systems across the country support innovative partnerships between workforce agencies, education, health and human service agencies, and businesses to train workers with the skills that local and regional economies need to thrive. On the same day, President Obama signed the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) into law. The WIOA presents an unprecedented opportunity to fully integrate career pathways approaches into state and local workforce systems across the country.

The National Dialogue on Career Pathways will highlight best practices while issuing a clear and measurable call to action to get more states and local areas involved in this work. At the end of the meeting, states, local areas, and discretionary grantees will receive special information about a new technical assistance opportunity to help them develop or expand their efforts around career pathways system building.

Among the featured speakers in the National Dialogue will be Portia Wu, Assistant Secretary for Labor's Employment and Training Administration; Johan Uvin, Acting Assistant Secretary for Education's Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education; Mark Greenburg, Acting Assistance Secretary for Health and Human Services' Administration for Children and Families. They will be joined by business leaders, including David L. Casey, Vice President for Workforce Strategies and Chief Diversity Officer at CVS Caremark and Maura Banta, Director of Global Citizenship Initiatives at IBM USA, who will provide keynote presentations during the event.

ETA is encouraging agencies and Boards to make plans to view the event with your business and industry partners, workforce agency partners, and other key stakeholders and to participate through social media throughout the day. Please review the attached materials that will help you create a robust "Viewing Party" for the event. On the day of the event, please go to the Live Stream link to view the National Dialogue for Career Pathways.

To help organize the event, a national Viewing Party Guide is also now available.

Before and during the event, you are encouraged to post questions on Twitter using the hashtag #careerpathways. The federal team will monitor your questions on Twitter and respond to them from the Labor Department Twitter account (@USDOL) during the event.

Suggested Social Media Posts:

Pre-event post: Join @USDOL @usedgov and @HHSGov on 9-23 @ 9:00 AM ET for a live stream plenary on #careerpathways.

Pre-event post: On 9-23 @ 9:00 AM ET, @USDOL @usedgov and @HHSGov will speak live about job-driven #careerpathways. Don't miss it!

Day-of post: Join @USDOL & colleagues today for a live stream plenary on #careerpathways.

Day-of post: Join business leaders @cvscaremarkfyi's David Casey and @IBM's Maura Banta today via live stream @ National Dialogue! #careerpathways

Day-of post: America, let's talk about #careerpathways today! Share your thoughts with us @USDOL @usedgov and @HHSGov. Join the Dialogue.

Also see:

Career Pathways Community of Practice