For Immediate Release - April 11, 2008

GOVERNOR PATRICK AWARDS $250,000 WORKFORCE TRAINING GRANT IN LYNN

Grant to Eastern Bank Corporation part of Governor's economic plan to expedite investments in infrastructure projects and the workforce

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BOSTON- Friday, April 11, 2008 - Governor Deval Patrick today announced a $250,000 Workforce Training Fund grant will be awarded to Eastern Bank in Lynn. The grant is part of the Administration's comprehensive strategy to make investments that will create a culture of opportunity focused on restrained spending and long- and short-term investments, while preparing for the impacts of a softening national economy.

"I'm proud to join our partners at the Eastern Bank Corporation in announcing a Workforce Training Fund grant of $250,000 to train 400 workers in a range of areas," said Governor Patrick. "Targeted investments like these will help ensure we continue immediate and long-term economic growth in the Commonwealth."

The Workforce Training Fund (WTF), administered by the Department of Workforce Development, under the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development, provides businesses and labor organizations with matching grants of up to $250,000 to finance incumbent worker training.

The grant announcement comes two days after the Governor announced in a major speech on the economy that Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Suzanne Bump would, within the next 90 days, expedite the release of over $18 million in grants to 200 companies throughout Massachusetts in order to train over 16,000 workers in every region of this state.

The training program at Eastern Bank focuses on sales and is comprised of three specific programs: 1.) Growing Your Business, which defines and clarifies a sales process with supporting training to improve ability to retain and expand client relationships and creating new business, 2.) Best Practices in Sales, a series of 10 modules that provide training on critical techniques to maximize success, and 3.) Sales Management/Coaching, which will give sales managers the ability to coach staff.

Secretary Bump has called the Workforce Training Fund an important way to make investments in our people - our workforce - so they have the skills and education and opportunity to compete and succeed in our economy, noting that these investments address one of the most important economic challenges we face in Massachusetts - the gap between the skills our workers have and the skills they need to succeed in the future.

The Workforce Training Fund has helped thousands of employers gain a competitive advantage by investing in hundreds of thousands of their employees. Since it's inception in 1999, the WTF has awarded more than 4,100 grants totaling over $150 million to train more than 208,000 Massachusetts workers.

For information on the Workforce Training Fund, visit www.mass.gov/wtf.

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