Training Grants for Employers
Wisconsin Fast Forward Grants
The Wisconsin Fast Forward training grant program has been established to address the need for skilled workers in Wisconsin. Funding is available for workforce training in high demand areas. The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development Office of Skills Development (OSD) administers funds. These funds are for businesses whose needs cannot be met through an existing program.
In order to qualify, employers need to show that the training will do one of two things:
- Provides jobs to under or unemployed workers
- Result in increased wages for current employees
Priority will be given to businesses working in partnership with other employers, workforce and economic development organizations, and other workforce partners. The company is responsible for submitting an online application through the State web site and is the fiscal agent of the grant funds.
The OSD makes announcement of which industry sectors are eligible to submit an application about three times per year. Round 3 of the Wisconsin Fast Forward Grants was just announced. Visit Wisconsin Fast Forward for complete details.
Application deadlines and grant ranges for the 3rd Round of grants are:
September 23: Manufacturing Occupations
September 30: Construction Trades and Related Occupations and Transportation, Logistics and Distribution Occupations
October 7: Financial Services Occupations and Information Technology Occupations
October 14: Customer Service Occupations
October 21: Agriculture and Related Occupations and Health Care and Related Occupations, and small businesses with 50 or fewer full-time employees
Online applications will be available at http://dwd.wisconsin.gov/wff/announcements.htm beginning September 2, 2014.
Workforce Advancement Training (WAT) Grants
Workforce Advancement Training grants are an investment in the development of a company’s current workforce. Gateway Technical College has expanded training services to help businesses and industry meet their training needs.
Grant funds can be used for:
- Assessment of the learning needs of employees to determine knowledge and skill levels.
- Development of curriculum that directly applies to employees' occupational tasks.
- Conducting instructional activities.
- Providing staff development needed by college staff that will enhance the proposed training.
- Purchasing supplies, equipment, video, computer software, and/or other instructional materials.
- Providing technical assistance to an employer which will result in the advancement of existing employees through a career pathway approach or additional hiring of new employees.
Priority is given to projects that help to:
- Increase a businesses’ productivity and competitiveness
- Increase employees’ wages or expand their job and career opportunities, or
- Increase employees' wages in the short term
- Improve employees' job and career opportunities in the short term
- Implement activities related to career pathways
- Implement part of a formal regional development strategy planned by an industry partnership
- Strengthen the position of the state's driver industries
The annual due date for applications is mid-May. Gateway Technical College staff will write and submit the grant application and Gateway then serves as the fiscal agent of the funding. If funds remain after the first round of awards, additional applications may be submitted until funds are depleted for the year.
Awards are made by July with a 12 month completion date. Grant funds awarded cover approximately 50% of the training costs. Organizations contribute the remaining funds to cover the total training project.
Lauri Howard, Director of Workforce Training