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Press Release $4.2M Awarded in Sen. Donnelly Grants to Help Unemployed Workers Fill In-Demand Jobs and Entry-Level Workers Advance in Their Careers

For immediate release:
9/26/2019
  • Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development

Media Contact for $4.2M Awarded in Sen. Donnelly Grants to Help Unemployed Workers Fill In-Demand Jobs and Entry-Level Workers Advance in Their Careers

Charles Pearce, Director of Communications, Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development

$4.2M Awarded in Sen. Donnelly Grants to Help Unemployed Workers Fill In-Demand Jobs

MarlboroughToday the Baker-Polito Administration awarded more than $4 million in the first-ever round of Senator Kenneth J. Donnelly Workforce Success Grants, which will fund training that assists unemployed or underemployed people fill in-demand regional jobs and help entry-level workers advance at their current employer.

Named in memory of Senator Kenneth J. Donnelly, who spent his career promoting workforce opportunities in Massachusetts, these 18 grants target jobs in health care and social assistance (approximately $2.6 million in funding), information technology ($500,000 in funding) and occupations identified in the Commonwealth’s Regional Skills Blueprints. Those occupations include accommodation, food service and hospitality, construction, finance and insurance, and transportation and warehousing.

“The creation of regional blueprints by teams of educators, workforce and economic development professionals provides us with clear strategies to promote growth in every corner of the Commonwealth,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Undertaking that planning means that today, we can make targeted investments and get the greatest return for our businesses, workers and economy.”

“Partnerships like those funded through these grants show how the Commonwealth can support local businesses by providing them with the resources to fill critical positions and remain competitive,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “That support carries on the legacy of Sen. Donnelly, who devoutly championed this cause to support Massachusetts’ working families.”

Last year, the Legislature passed a bill that instituted a dedicated funding stream for the program and renamed the grants after the late Senator Kenneth J. Donnelly. Funded through the Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund (WCTF), which is administered by Commonwealth Corporation on behalf of the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development, the grants each implement one of two options, Training and Placement or Training and Advancement.

Seventeen proposals received grant awards for the Training and Placement Program to fill in-demand regional occupations with people who are unemployed or underemployed. Upon completion of their training, most of the workers will earn between $14 and $20 per hour in their new job.

One partnership received a grant award for the Training and Advancement option, which seeks to provide advancement opportunities for entry-level workers earning less than $15 per hour at their current employer, preparing those workers for advancement within their employer into a high-priority occupation that pays at least $2 more per hour and is full-time.

“A recent McKinsey Global Institute report concluded that the Boston metro area is one of 25 hubs that could generate 60 percent of the job growth in the United States through 2030. It is essential that we connect workers with new opportunities and equip them with the skills to meet that demand,” said Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development Rosalin Acosta.

“Amazon, Walmart and AT&T have made headlines for investing hundreds of millions of dollars into the training of their employees. These significant expenditures made by some of America’s largest corporations underscore the imperative that we assist local Massachusetts businesses that want to invest in their workforce,” said Commonwealth Corporation President and CEO Dr. J.D. LaRock.

Each partnership includes at least two Massachusetts employers with demonstrated vacancies in the target occupation, the local MassHire Workforce Board, one local MassHire Career Center and, if applicable, the union. Grant awardees are required to provide a 30 percent match of total awarded funds, either in cash or in-kind.

The grant awards are as follows:

  • 1199SEIU League Training and Upgrading Fund: $243,977 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance
  • Boston Education, Skills and Training (BEST) Corp.: $215,833 to train for jobs in Accommodation/Food Service/Hospitality
  • Boston Private Industry Council (MassHire Boston Workforce Board): $250,000 to train for jobs in Information Technology
  • Cape Cod Regional Technical High School: $141,084 to train for jobs in Construction
  • Center for Community Health Education Research and Services, Inc: $238,471 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance
  • DPV Transportation: $228,070 to train for jobs in Transportation/Hospitality
  • Holyoke Community College: $249,989 to train for jobs in Information Technology
  • Jewish Vocational Service (JVS, Inc.): $250,000 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance
  • MassHire Berkshire Workforce Board: $218,750 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance
  • MassHire Franklin Hampshire Workforce Board and Career Center: $250,000 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance
  • MassHire Greater Brockton Workforce Board: $225,000 to train for jobs in Finance and Insurance
  • MassHire Merrimack Valley Workforce Board: $257,078 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance
  • MassHire Metro South/West Workforce Board: $218,750 to train for jobs in Transportation and Warehousing
  • Middlesex Community College: $250,000 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance
  • Operation A.B.L.E. of Greater Boston, Inc: $230,000 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance
  • Quinsigamond Community College: $249,527 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance
  • Springfield Technical Community College: $249,975 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance
  • YMCA of Greater Boston: $249,895 to train for jobs in Health Care and Social Assistance

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Media Contact for $4.2M Awarded in Sen. Donnelly Grants to Help Unemployed Workers Fill In-Demand Jobs and Entry-Level Workers Advance in Their Careers

Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development  

EOLWD manages the Commonwealth’s workforce development and labor departments to ensure that workers, employers, and the unemployed have the tools and training needed to succeed in the Massachusetts economy.
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