It’s no secret that the Michigan workforce could use a little help. Between job losses and layoffs, there are many Michiganders who could use a little brush-up on skills that make them more attractive and more employable.
Enter: the Detroit Regional Workforce Fund.
More than $3.5 million has been committed from 10 public and private groups over the next three years to train Southeast Michigan workers for emerging jobs, according to Crain’s Detroit Business, with an emphasis on the health and sustainability sectors.
The fund aims to do three things for three different audiences:
Employers: Increase employers’ ability to attract, retain and advance high-quality talent to satisfy critical business needs.
Residents: Increase the number of low-skilled, low- to moderate-income residents who advance to middle skill jobs paying family-sustaining wages.
Workforce Development System: Enhance the structure for workforce development in the region so it promotes economic growth in existing and emerging sectors. Focus is on immediate, tangible change that can be accomplished in a 36-month period.
The program’s backers include:
- John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
- Kresge Foundation
- Skillman Foundation
- Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation
- W.K. Kellogg Foundation
- Ford Foundation
- National Fund for Workforce Solutions
- U.S. Department of Labor & Economic Growth
- United Way for Southeastern Michigan
To find out what the project’s three initial approved grants are, check out the Crain’s Detroit Business article here.
If this project actually does what it promises to do, it’ll be a huge shot in the arm for Michigan’s battered workforce. More highly skilled workers means more employable workers, and as our state begins to regroup after a deep recession, that’s exactly what we need right now.