Gov. Jay Nixon today launched Training for Tomorrow, a $12 million initiative to educate Missourians in high-tech fields and get them working in growing industries. These grants will help Missouri community colleges create or expand training programs to serve additional students.
The Governor announced Training for Tomorrow during visits to Ozarks Technical Community College in Springfield and Moberly Area Community College.
"Earlier this fall, I toured many of Missouri's community colleges to hear directly about the needs of workers and businesses in their areas," Gov. Nixon said. "In those conversations, it became clear that to turn this economy around, more Missourians need access to training programs in high-tech, high-demand fields. Especially in growing industries like health care, technical training beyond high school is absolutely vital, but many of our community colleges simply don't have the equipment, instructors or resources to meet the needs of Missouri's workers. Training for Tomorrow will expand these programs quickly and help get Missourians ready to work as soon as possible."
Under Training for Tomorrow, member institutions of the Missouri Community College Association will partner with the government of the county in which they are located to apply for grant dollars to develop or expand programs to train Missourians in technical fields. Occupations specifically targeted by these funds could include veterinary and pharmacy technicians, nursing aides or skilled craftsmen.
Community colleges applying for competitive grants from Training for Tomorrow will be required to provide a detailed description of the programs they plan to develop or expand, including:
- Outlining the specific actions they will take to expand the capacity of high-demand programs;
- Detailing the market demand for the programs, both by students and employers;
- Identifying partners from business and industry who can help design the programs;
- Aligning the expansion of these programs with local economic-recovery efforts;
- Showing that the expansion will create or add pathways to specific high-demand careers in the local market; and
- Drafting an implementation plan for the programs.
The Missouri Department of Economic Development will administer Training for Tomorrow, review and evaluate the applications, and recommend awards. Funding for the grants will come from the Second Supplemental Disaster Recovery Community Development Block Grant, a federal program to assist with economic recovery efforts.
Training for Tomorrow funds can cover all costs related to developing or expanding high-demand programs, but the funds cannot be used to replace existing salaries, pay for existing overhead costs, or cover "bricks-and-mortar" projects.
"This program will provide new opportunities for Missouri workers, meet critical needs for our businesses, and help move our economy forward," said Marcia Pfeiffer, president of St. Louis Community College-Florissant Valley and chair of the Presidents and Chancellors Council of the Missouri Community College Association. "Our institutions play a vital role in preparing Missouri workers for the careers of tomorrow. This funding will help us expand our highest-demand programs, serve more students, and get Missourians working quickly. We appreciate Gov. Nixon's support of Missouri's community colleges and his strong leadership on this vital economic initiative."
Application materials for community colleges and county governments are available online by visiting the state's Web portal, www.mo.gov, and searching for Training for Tomorrow. Completed applications are due Feb. 15, 2010.