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Could Your Local Area Use $250k To Help Drive Workforce Development?

Construction is one of several industries identified by the High Demand Career Initiative as vital to the success of Georgia's economy.

There are many ways to increase the local workforce in a given area. There are career training options for those in need and education options, too. There are career academies, technical colleges, internships, apprenticeships… the list is long.

One of the more dynamic ways of addressing the need for a talented, local workforce is to engage directly with the industries that make up that area. This is exactly what the Governor’s High Demand Career Initiative (HDCI) is doing, specifically with the creation of HDCI Sector Partnerships.

Sector partnerships are a key strategy for moving and sustaining the goals of HDCI. They are a proven approach to aligning the training and education programs in a region with the employee skills and competencies needed by employers in a given sector. Sector partnerships emphasize employer engagement and encourage employers themselves to lead, direct, and champion the work.

One way to encourage communities to create these partnerships is the creation of the HDCI Sector Partnership Grants.

HDCI awards grants to regions that meet certain criteria, with the goal of creating region sector partnerships, which bring together multiple employers within an industry to collaborate with schools, colleges, labor, workforce agencies, community organizations, and other community stakeholders to align training with the skills needed for that industry to grow and compete.

Basically these partnerships get all of the key stakeholders into the room in an effort to come up with the most effective ways to tackle workforce and education needs. 

Why is there a picture of a robot? Because it's awesome and one day the IT industry will be tasked with ensuring these guys don't take over the world.

Each of Georgia’s 12 economic development regions had the opportunity to apply for up to $250,000 each that can be used over a two-year period by Local Workforce Development Regions and their partners to support this work.

The grants will further assist with the efforts that have already begun throughout the state, encourage the adoption of an all-inclusive strategy for sector partnerships and encourage Local Workforce Development Boards to be a catalyst in forming and sustaining sector partnerships.

The grants are designed to provide sufficient funding to support a regional convener (either full-time employee(s) or consulting team) to assist with the regional work

Ensuring the local workforce of a given area is up to snuff is difficult but necessary. These partnerships are a key tool, and these grants are an excellent way of funding them. In fact, the HDCI has awarded the first round of grants and will be releasing a second round of grant awards in the next few months.

For more information on the HDCI, sector partnerships, or the grants themselves, click the embedded links. 

Parrish Walton

Parrish Walton is a communications specialist with the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD). He is the primary author of the Georgia@Work blog, which aims to educate Georgia citizens on all of the great things done by the Workforce... more