WIB News - June 2010 Issue
Minnesota Receives $6 Million for Summer Youth Program
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has awarded $6 million to Minnesota for a program that provides summer work experiences for young people.
DEED, the Minnesota Department of Human Services and the Minnesota Workforce Council Association are working together to coordinate the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Summer Youth Program. The program is administered by DEED through an inter-agency agreement with DHS.
“Research has shown that a key predictor of future success in the workplace is early exposure to a job,” said Kay Tracy, director of DEED’s Office of Youth Development. “At-risk youth will receive support to help them build work readiness skills, find jobs and explore career options. Summer youth programs are critical to preparing a new generation of workers.”
The TANF Summer Youth Program will serve (in order of priority):
- Teen parents, ages 16-24, who receive benefits under the Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP).
- Youth, ages 16-18, who live in households that receive benefits under MFIP.
- Older youth, ages 19-24, who live in MFIP households, but do not receive benefits under MFIP.
- Other youth, ages 14-24, who are members of families eligible for participation in TANF. (Families must include a minor and have income below 200 percent of the poverty level).
For more information, visit our TANF Summer Youth Program page. Select the following link for contact information for your county.
Weik Appointed to NAWB Board
Cathy Weik (pictured) was one of five new members appointed to the board of the National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB), based in Washington, D.C. She is senior vice president of administration for Stratis Health in Bloomington and chair of the Dakota-Scott Workforce Investment Board, Greater Metropolitan Workforce Council and the Minnesota Workforce Council Association. Weik has more than 25 years of human resource and senior management experience. She has been a board member of a variety of organizations over the past 15 years and has a Master of Arts degree in leadership from Augsburg College in Minneapolis.
NAWB represents nearly 600 Workforce Investment Boards nationally as well as related organizations. NAWB supports the efforts of those groups through advocacy, training, technical assistance, communication and strategic partnerships.
Minnesota Awarded $8.1 Million for Dislocated Workers
The U.S. Department of Labor announced in May that it has awarded two National Emergency Grants (NEGs) totaling $8.1 million for dislocated worker training in Minnesota.
DEED’s Dislocated Worker Program has been awarded a $2.6 million NEG to assist 613 former employees affected by the consolidation of Northwest Airlines and Delta Airlines, and a $5.5 million grant to provide continuing job training and related services for about 1,800 unemployed Minnesotans who have already begun training programs or are on waiting lists.
“Many laid-off workers need continued support as they look for work, even as we are seeing some signs of recovery in the state economic picture,” said DEED Commissioner Dan McElroy.
Dislocated Worker Program services may include skills assessment, basic skills training, individual career counseling and occupational training.
Dakota-Scott Workforce Services is providing dislocated worker services to the former airline employees under the $2.6 million grant. For additional information, see www.tinyurl.com/2a3jwug.
The $5.5 million grant will be administered by 11 state entities: Anoka County Job Training Center, Dakota-Scott Workforce Services, Hennepin County Training and Employment Assistance, Northeast Minnesota Office of Job Training, Ramsey County Workforce Solutions, Rural Minnesota Concentrated Employment Programs Inc., Southeastern Minnesota Workforce Development Inc., Southwest Minnesota Private Industry Council Inc., Stearns-Benton Employment and Training Council, Washington County WorkForce Center and the Winona County Workforce Council.
National Emergency Grants were funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. NEGs are awarded based on a state's ability to meet specific guidelines. For more information, visit www.doleta.gov/NEG/.
Proposals Wanted for Green Jobs Training Grants
The Minnesota State Energy Sector Partnership (MSESP) is requesting proposals for programs that train Minnesotans for jobs in the energy efficiency and renewable energy industries.
Minnesota businesses and organizations, as well as regional partnerships and collaborations, are eligible to apply for funds. Proposals that address supporting sectors and suppliers will be considered.
Proposals must provide training, job placement and related activities in one or more industries in the following sectors:
- Energy efficient building, construction and retrofits
- Renewable electric power
Proposals are due by 4 p.m. on Friday, June 18.
Funding requests may range from $10,000 to $100,000. While MSESP will be distributing up to $1.1 million in response to this request, additional funds will be awarded in a separate request for proposals (RFP) in 2011 and 2012. To download the RFP and supporting documentation or to find more information, visit www.gwdc.org.
The Minnesota State Energy Sector Partnership – funded by a three-year, $6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor – was created to provide training, job placement and similar activities in industries related to energy efficiency and renewable energy.
Attend DEED’s Summer Road Show
You won’t want to miss DEED’s annual summer road show beginning this month. Road shows will take place in several Minnesota communities.
This year’s theme is “New Tools for New Times,” featuring presentations by DEED Commissioner Dan McElroy and other agency officials about new initiatives designed to encourage economic development in the state. The commissioner will also discuss the state of the economy and give an overview of the 2010 legislative session.
New initiatives that will be discussed include:
- Angel Investor Tax Credit;
- Research and Development Tax Credit;
- Local Energy Improvement Financing Program;
- Tax credit for rehabilitating historic structures; and
- Minnesota Science and Technology Authority Act.
The three-hour sessions are planned for Rochester, Fairmont, Marshall, Little Falls, Hutchinson, Pine City, Brooklyn Park, Fergus Falls, Hibbing, Bemidji and Thief River Falls. The events will include time for questions and answers.
For a schedule, registration form and other details, see our DEED Summer Roadshow page.
MWCA Annual Summer Conference Begins Aug. 10
Mark your calendar for the Minnesota Workforce Council Association Summer Conference in Duluth on Aug. 10-12.
The conference will include:
- State and federal updates about workforce development;
- A joint strategy session with the Governor’s Workforce Development Council;
- A roundtable with Workforce Investment Board members and local elected officials covering “hot topics” in workforce development; and
- A discussion about best practices in workforce development.
Watch for further information at the MWCA website.
Minnesota Starts Technology Training Partnership with Microsoft
Minnesota WorkForce Centers are working with Microsoft in an innovative public-private partnership to provide free technology training for workers.
Through its Elevate America program, Microsoft has provided 12,400 vouchers to WorkForce Centers in Minnesota for technology training and certification. Both employed and unemployed Minnesotans are eligible for this online training.
"Through our partnership with Microsoft, the Elevate America program will provide tools and resources to help Minnesotans become technologically proficient and ultimately successful in the global workforce," said DEED Commissioner Dan McElroy, when the announcement was made on May 26.
Minnesota has received 5,500 vouchers for online training, 5,500 vouchers for online testing and 1,400 vouchers for more advanced level training.
Each training voucher is redeemable for a free e-learning class on one of the programs in the Microsoft Office Suite.
Each testing voucher is redeemable for an exam, which, if passed, signifies a student is Microsoft-certified in a particular software.
Advanced level vouchers are redeemable for training for those on IT professional career tracks in areas such as Web development or database management.
Distribution of vouchers through the WorkForce Centers began on May 26 and must be completed no later than 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 24. Government employees are not eligible for these vouchers.
For more information on the Elevate America training in Minnesota, visit our Elevate America Training page.
Microsoft announced the "Elevate America" program at the National Governors’ Conference in February 2009. About 1 million vouchers are expected to be distributed nationwide.
Take the Partner Express
The May issue of Partner Express, A Monthly Resource for Dislocated Worker Program Providers is now available. Read about the Third Annual Job Seeker Counselor Conference, best practices for rapid response, Project Gate II and more. You can sign up for the newsletter by sending an e-mail to Kim.Anez@state.mn.us. Enter “Subscribe” in the subject line.
Save the Date for Development Conference
The 15th annual Minnesota Development Conference will be held Sept. 29-30 at the Crowne Plaza Riverfront in St. Paul. The event will focus on the theme of transformation. The goal is to keep Minnesota a growing and vibrant state while building on the partnerships between economic developers, workforce experts and education professionals that have contributed to past success. Experts will give presentations that will help attendees identify what strategies have worked in the past and which ones are likely to succeed in the future.
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