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Gov. Whitmer Continues to Support Michiganders & Businesses w/ New Grants
July 19, 2023
$13.5 million in Going Pro Talent Fund Grants to train approximately 8,500 workers at 300 businesses
LANSING, Mich. – With nearly $13.5 million in grants from the Going PRO Talent Fund, the State of Michigan is helping approximately 8,500 workers employed across nearly 300 businesses earn industry-recognized credentials and strong wages to support themselves and meet the high-skill talent needs of their employers.
“The Going PRO Talent Fund is an investment in our state’s greatest asset—our people—helping them develop the skills they need to advance their careers and 'make it’ in Michigan," said Governor Whitmer. "These grants help us put thousands of Michiganders on paths to good-paying jobs and empower hundreds of Michigan businesses across the state develop the talent they need to compete in the global economy. Our work is paying off—we are a top ten state for doing business in 2023, so let’s keep connecting hardworking Michiganders with the training they need to build brighter futures and ‘make it’ in Michigan.”
Since the program's launch in 2014, more than 6,000 Michigan businesses have received Going PRO Talent Fund awards to train 175,000 new and existing workers. More than 60% of the employers receiving funds are small businesses (fewer than 100 employees). Training must fill a demonstrated talent need experienced by the employer and result in the employee acquiring a credential for a skill that is transferable and recognized by industry. The average training cost per worker is $1,250. According to 2021 data, average hourly wages for Going PRO Talent Fund participants increased by $5.71 six months after completing training.
“Programs like the Going PRO Talent Fund help businesses throughout Michigan train the talent they need in order to stay competitive in the global economy,” said Susan Corbin, director of Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO). “Investments like these help us connect individuals and business leaders with tailored opportunities and unique resources they need to prosper. Together, we are creating a competitive and innovative environment that improves the quality of life for people who live, work and do business in Michigan.”
“The Going PRO Talent Fund has continued to help Michigan employers retain their workers by providing the necessary support for them to help upskill their workforce,” said Stephanie Beckhorn, director of LEO’s Office of Employment and Training. “These trainings have also provided an opportunity for employees to gain industry-recognized credentials they need to grow and thrive in these in-demand careers.”
LEO makes Going PRO Talent Fund awards to employers through Michigan Works! Agencies (MWAs). Participating employers play an integral role in defining their key training needs, then work with their local MWAs and other partners to develop strategic training plans.
“The Going PRO Talent Fund is arguably the best talent development program the State of Michigan has to offer,” said David Worthams, Director of Employment Policy for the Michigan Manufacturers Association. “As we get into the next cycle of grants, employers and their employees will see huge strides in new skills that we need as we move into the future of manufacturing in the state. This is another reason why Michigan is one of the best states to do business in.”
By establishing a preference for employer-provided training that results in a worker receiving an industry recognized credential or college credit, the Going PRO Talent Fund aligns with Governor Whitmer’s Sixty by 30 goal to increase the number of working-age adults with a skill certificate or college degree to 60% by 2030. Learn more at SixtyBy30.org.
To view a full list of grant recipients for the 2023 fiscal year and learn more about the Going PRO Talent Fund and its application cycles, visit Michigan.gov/TalentFund.