Holcomb, Milo Unveil 'Next Level Jobs' Program

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Governor Holcomb and Blair Milo announced the program in Brazil this morning. Governor Holcomb and Blair Milo announced the program in Brazil this morning.
BRAZIL -

Governor Eric Holcomb and new Secretary of Career Connections and Talent Blair Milo today rolled out Indiana's Next Level Jobs initiative. Holcomb says the program will provide more than $20 million over the next two years through grants to support training efforts to fill high-demand, high-wage jobs throughout the state.

The Workforce Ready Grant was created earlier this year by the Indiana General Assembly. It aims to help train adults to fill openings in high-demand industries. The funding covers tuition costs for adults to earn career certificates in high-growth sectors, including advanced manufacturing, construction, health, life sciences, logistics and information technology. The certificate programs will be available at Ivy Tech Community College and Vincennes University campuses throughout the state.

The Indiana Department of Workforce Development's Employer Training Grant program is designed to help offset the costs for employers to train new employees in those industries. It offers employers up to $2,500 per new employee to qualifying companies to train and retain new hires. The DWD will launch a pilot of the grant for 2018 and 2019, using $10 million in Career and Technical Education Innovation and Advancement Funds.

Holcomb says, with Indiana's unemployment rate at historic lows, there are currently about 95,000 job openings throughout Indiana. "Now more than ever, our state needs to ramp up efforts to prepare Hoosiers for the jobs available today—and for the one million more we expect over the next decade,” said Holcomb. “Next Level Jobs will drive our efforts to meet that demand and will put hardworking Hoosiers in high-need, high-wage careers.”

Milo says the programs will help ensure that employers, workers and postsecondary institutions are connected to help meet work force demands. She says that is crucial "as Baby Boomers retire and our economy expands and diversifies."

Holcomb will discuss the program at events throughout the state. Inside INdiana Business will be at this afternoon's Indianapolis event and will update this story.

You can learn more about the Workforce Ready and Employer Training grants and find applications by clicking here.

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      The U.S. unemployment rate has moved down to 3.9 percent, which is its lowest level since December 2000, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Great news! Maybe not. There are business sectors that need employees due to constraints in the labor market - namely truck drivers. The level of employment in the truck transportation industry is essentially unchanged since mid-2015, according to the bureau. And the impact is being felt.

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