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State Announces Third Round of Strategic Investments in Career Pathways

$500,000 Awarded to Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation and Howard Community College

BALTIMORE (December 17, 2019) – Maryland Department of Labor Secretary Tiffany P. Robinson today announced that $500,000 in federal funds have been awarded to local workforce entities. This third round of career pathway grants will be made to the Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation (AAWDC) and Howard Community College (HCC). These targeted funds support localities in developing career pathways that increase opportunities for adult learners while expanding the talent pipeline for the business community.

“Three funding rounds totaling $1.5 million in grants have been awarded to local boards and organizations in Maryland to connect adult learners with life-changing career training and job opportunities,” said Labor Secretary Robinson. “Through these innovative and strategic investments in career pathways, our department is changing the way the state approaches workforce development.”

AAWDC, in partnership with the Anne Arundel Community College and regional employers, will offer innovative programming and services to qualified candidates interested in a career pathway in the Dental Assisting and Auto Mechanics occupations. HCC’s grant award will support the development of the Vision for Success program, which will support intermediate or high level English Language Learners in becoming Ophthalmic Technician Assistants.

Literacy, numeracy, and English language requirements often make it challenging for adult learners to access occupational training opportunities. Historically, educational prerequisites have prevented adult learners from enrolling in job preparation courses due to requirements related to minimum levels of academic proficiency. The career pathways developed through this funding will create integrated education and training opportunities that ensure accelerated access to industry credentials and work opportunities for adult learners.

Developed by the Department of Labor, the Career Pathways grant program offers expanded opportunities for adult learners throughout the state. It is a part of Maryland’s implementation of the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), which serves both jobseekers and businesses. WIOA addresses the needs of jobseekers by establishing a workforce system that helps them access education, training, and support services to gain employment and succeed in the labor market, and employer needs by matching them to the skilled workers they need to compete in the global economy.

This solicitation gave all of Maryland’s WIOA Local Workforce Development Boards (Title I providers) and Adult Education organizations (Title II providers) the opportunity to apply for up to $250,000 in funding to develop innovative demonstration projects with a consortium of local partners, including adult education providers and business partners. Eligible applicants were provided a range of recommended interventions that were selected by the department after careful consideration and a review of national best practices. These interventions include:

  • Registered apprenticeship or pre-apprenticeship,
  • Integrated education and training,
  • Integrated English literacy and civics education,
  • Transition support specialist between local workforce and adult education entities,
  • English language acquisition, and
  • Distance learning.

First and second round grants were awarded to local workforce boards in Anne Arundel, Baltimore City, Mid-Maryland (Howard and Carroll counties), Prince George’s County, and Western Maryland (Garrett, Allegany, and Washington counties).

For more information about Maryland’s workforce system and training opportunities provided to those who qualify, please visit Division of Workforce Development and Adult Learning’s website, email, or call 410-767-2173.

About the Maryland Department of Labor
The Maryland Department of Labor is committed to safeguarding and protecting Marylanders. We're proud to support the economic stability of the state by providing businesses, the workforce, and the consuming public with high-quality, customer-focused regulatory, employment, and training services. For updates and information, follow the Maryland Department of Labor on Twitter (@MD_Labor), Facebook and visit our website.

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