N.J. Labor Department announces $10M grant to expand apprenticeship training centers

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The New Jersey Department of Labor & Workforce Development, together with the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, on Monday said it will invest $10 million to expand apprenticeship training centers to meet the growing need for skilled workers as New Jersey experiences an unprecedented surge in infrastructure and public works initiatives.

Under a Memorandum of Understanding between NJDOL and NJEDA, NJEDA will develop a competitive program that will solicit proposals from entities based in New Jersey that are affiliated with a successful U.S. Department of Labor Registered Apprenticeship.

The MOU will also enable a deepened and expanded collaboration between the two agencies across a range of workforce and economic development initiatives, to reduce barriers to training and employment and help employers retain qualified workers.

“Ensuring the proper training of New Jersey’s skilled workers is essential to the successful development of our infrastructure and public works,” Gov. Phil Murphy said. “This investment towards building out our state’s apprenticeship training facilities will provide our skilled workers 21st-century, state-of-the-art facility environments tailored to their learning needs. I thank DOL Commissioner Rob Asaro-Angelo and EDA CEO Tim Sullivan for their continued dedication to New Jersey’s workforce development programs.”

“Apprenticeship is deeply rooted in the construction trades, and, with the rising demand for these skilled workers, we must ensure these critical occupations continue to flourish so New Jersey can meet its infrastructure and economic goals,” Asaro-Angelo said.

“Under Gov. Murphy’s leadership, New Jersey continues to make major investments in the next generation of workers,” Sullivan said. “The joint effort between the NJDOL and NJEDA will help keep our state competitive and strengthen our economy, while preparing workers with the training and skills needed for career opportunities in the construction trades.”

This initial funding seeks to build capacity to respond to the increasing demand of infrastructure growth by investing in facilities, equipment and expertise, with the expectation of supporting the construction or expansion of several sizable new training centers, each with the capacity to train hundreds of skilled workers per year.

Applicants will be required to be in the construction trades and affiliated with at least one USDOL Registered Apprenticeship program.