The New Jersey Economic Development Authority board recently approved five grant applications totaling more than $3.7 million under the EDA’s Offshore Wind Workforce and Skills Development Grant Challenge. With this funding, recipients will launch innovative training programs focused on strengthening and diversifying the state’s offshore wind workforce, with a particular emphasis on serving overburdened communities.
“As offshore wind grows in New Jersey, we must have a well-trained and qualified workforce that meets the needs of the industry,” NJEDA CEO Tim Sullivan said. “Under Gov. Phil Murphy’s leadership, the NJEDA is committed to ensuring high-quality workforce development training programs are available so that all New Jerseyans, especially those living in minority and low-income communities, have equitable access to this emerging industry. This is another step towards achieving 11GW of offshore wind by 2040 while creating a better future for the next generation.”
The grant recipients will use the funding to provide skill development, workforce training, job placement and other related services to develop, implement or expand workforce development initiatives in offshore wind.
The funded training will support the needs identified in an offshore wind workforce assessment, which projected that the offshore wind industry will result in 20,000 new jobs in 2030 across numerous sectors in the state, including construction, manufacturing and professional services.
The following organizations were approved for grants:
- Mid-Atlantic States Career and Education Center: $1 million;
- Eastern Atlantic States Carpenters Technical College: $987,124;
- New Jersey Environmental Justice Alliance: $700,000;
- Apex Solutions Foundation: $612,720;
- Ivy Hill Neighborhood Association: $425,155.
“We look forward to working closely with the grantees to ensure a diverse pool of workers with the skills, competencies and credentials needed to thrive in this growing industry sector. Wind energy is our future. With these grants, we are helping ensure equal opportunities for these sustainable careers are available to all workers in our state,” New Jersey Department of Labor & Workforce Development Commissioner Robert Asaro-Angelo said.
“New Jersey’s burgeoning offshore wind industry will not only provide New Jerseyans with new, clean energy to help improve the air we breathe and mitigate the impacts of climate change, but will provide a significant boost to the state’s economy by creating thousands of jobs,” Joseph Fiordaliso, president, New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, said. “The latest EDA grant awards provide an important step forward for training and skill development so the jobs that are being created in a growing industry can be filled by New Jerseyans.”