U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx today announced $3 million in job training grants in eight states.
U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx today announced $3 million in job training grants in eight states. The "Ladders of Opportunity Initiative On-The-Job Training/Supportive Service (OJT/SS)" grants are part of an ongoing federal effort, which includes stakeholder outreach and the creation of the Federal Highway Administration's Center for Transportation Workforce Development, to improve the apprenticeships and training opportunities for underrepresented or disadvantaged people seeking careers in transportation, engineering or construction.
"Providing individuals with the job training opportunities they need is critical to keeping our highway system up and running," said Secretary Foxx. "Training programs like these create opportunities for workers in the short-term, and ensure that the next generation is ready for the challenges that will face America's transportation system in the years ahead."
According to USDOT estimates, more than half the current highway construction workforce is over the age of 45 and, with retirement, separation and growth, more than a half-million highway construction jobs are projected over the next decade.
The grants focus specifically on supporting innovative, nationally and regionally significant highway construction workforce development programs that target specific workforce needs across the country and build ladders of opportunity to the middle class for American workers.
The Ladders of Opportunity Initiative OJT/SS grants support the training programs of state departments of transportation (DOTs) for highway contractors, apprentices and trainees. The grants encourages strategic partnerships among state DOTs and other organizations or stakeholders involved with workforce development, such as educational institutions, public workforce investment systems, and labor organizations, to support training opportunities for minorities and women in skilled and semi-skilled crafts.
“On-the-job training along with other strategies reflected in these awards can connect people who need jobs with job opportunities," said Federal Highway Administrator Gregory Nadeau. “By giving people the specialized training our transportation system needs, we can ensure that our transportation system remains safe and efficient for decades to come.”
The full list of grant recipients can be seen here: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/pressroom/fhwa1636.cfm