The Biden administration on Tuesday released an update of its multi-agency efforts to develop and expand the U.S. workforce that will be needed for jobs created through recent federal legislation.
The “Roadmap to Support Good Jobs” plan highlights the importance of education and training to recently passed legislation designed to spur U.S. job growth in sectors such as infrastructure, supply chains and manufacturing. The administration also announced new programs at various federal departments to continue growing and developing a skilled workforce.
“The purpose of this collaborative vision is to build our workforce by ensuring every American — whether they go to college or not — will have equitable access to high-quality training, education, and services that provide a path to a good career without leaving their community,” the White House said in a fact sheet.
Among the new efforts that will include community colleges directly or indirectly:
- The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) will award $85 million in competitive and formula grants to states to better support state registered apprenticeship capacity, while also driving system capacity and readiness. DOL will also engage in rulemaking to build a modern and more navigable national apprenticeship system.
- The Department of Commerce will award $500 million through its Tech Hubs program to accelerate the growth of select U.S. regions to become more globally competitive in emerging technologies. This will include building the workforce needed to support innovation, the White House said. (The American Association of Community Colleges will host a webinar on May 22 with Commerce officials on opportunities for community colleges through the CHIPS Act.)
- The Department of Energy will invest $150 million in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds to expand its Industrial Assessment Center (IAC) program, increasing pathways for workers into high-quality clean energy jobs and supporting small and medium-sized U.S. manufacturers. “The IAC Program will form new partnerships with community colleges, trade schools, and union training programs, offering hands-on experience for engineers-in-training while helping manufacturers save energy, reduce costs, increase productivity, and boost competitiveness,” the administration said.
- The Department of Transportation will announce $1.7 billion in funding for bus and bus facilities grants that will include a component for registered apprenticeships that include supportive services. Transit agencies moving to zero-emission fleets may request up to 5% of the grant for workforce development and supportive services to help workers update their skills and train new hires.