- More than $3 million in grants were awarded through the New York Department of Labor and the State University of New York to provide 3,644 state residents access to training opportunities, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Feb. 24.
- The grants were awarded to nearly 70 businesses, community colleges and community-based organizations in New York. The funds build upon the state's Workforce Development Initiative, which launched in May 2019 to provide training to 8,200 New Yorkers.
- "The state's workforce must adapt in order to take advantage of the rapidly changing economy, and our Workforce Development Initiative is giving New Yorkers the edge they need to succeed," Cuomo said.
The skills gap and low unemployment have demanded multiple stakeholders — including federal, state and local governments — to pull together and create solutions. Similar to New York's Workforce Development Initiative and the new grants, other state governments have moved to offer training and upskilling opportunities. New Jersey's Department of Labor, for example, made $3 million in matching grants available to the state's businesses in November 2019. At the beginning of this year, the department announced a $2 million grant opportunity through which organizations can create “degree apprenticeship” programs.
These efforts are echoed on the federal level. With its "Pledge to America's Workers," the Trump Administration promised to create at least 6 million training opportunities. More than 15 million opportunities have been pledged for U.S. workers, according to the White House. This came alongside the U.S. Department of Labor's revamped registered apprenticeship program, which it has said "enable[s] and energize[s] more employers to participate and provide[s] them access to larger talent pools that have been trained for entry-level to management positions, thereby meeting industry demands and reducing unemployment rates across the country."