Governor Dannel P. Malloy today announced that the U.S. Department of Labor has awarded $12 million for a consortium grant proposal submitted by five community colleges (Capital, Norwalk, Manchester, Gateway and Middlesex), Eastern Connecticut State University, and Charter Oak State College, to focus on providing targeted certifications, industry-recognized credentials, and associate degrees to dislocated workers, veterans and other under-employed workers for careers in the growing health and life science fields. The grant is funded under the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Grants Program at the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
“Healthcare and the life sciences are two sectors of our economy that are poised to grow in the coming century,” said Governor Malloy. “That’s the reason we have vigorously pursued companies like Jackson Laboratories and Alexion to relocate and expand in our state. The more we can solidify Connecticut’s role as a leader in these industries, the more our residents will have access to good paying jobs with good benefits. And thanks to today’s announcement, we’re going to be able to have the workforce in place to really make this vision a reality.”
“Our institutions can and should play a big part in preparing the workers needed to support the growing health and life science fields in our state,” said Robert A. Kennedy, President of the Board of Regents for Higher Education, which governs the 17 Connecticut State Colleges & Universities. “I was particularly pleased that our proposal was submitted collaboratively by a state university, our only public, online college and five community colleges. This is exactly the kind of partnership we need to focus on now that we’re one, combined organization. I also appreciate the extraordinary amount of industry support we received – from hospitals across the state to CURE to Jackson Laboratory. Our private sector partners understand that, with 96,000 students in our institutions, we have the capacity to train and prepare the workers they need.”
“This is excellent news for our institutions and for our state,” said David Levinson, President of Norwalk Community College, which acted as the primary applicant for this grant, and Vice President for the Community Colleges at the Board of Regents. “This funding will go a long way toward helping us better prepare our students for fields that are hiring, and help those residents who are unemployed or underemployed find new jobs in the health and life science fields.”