STATEHOUSE (May 27, 2020) – Local lawmakers encourage Hoosiers whose jobs were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic to take advantage of tuition-free training grants offered through Indiana’s Next Level Jobs program.
Established in 2017 by a law supported by State Reps. Bob Behning (R-Indianapolis), Greg Steuerwald (R-Avon) and Jeff Thompson (R-Lizton), the program provides Workforce Ready Grants to help Indiana residents who have a high school diploma or equivalent but less than a college degree receive training in high-demand job fields. With more than 500,000 Hoosiers filing for unemployment since March, Behning said these grants could help those who are laid off or furloughed to build on their skills and get a better paying job.
“This program has been instrumental in connecting Hoosiers to high-wage jobs, even before the pandemic,” Behning said. “Those who find themselves unemployed or underemployed can take this time to work toward a certificate in a high-demand field. These careers are crucial to keeping our economy going during this public health emergency and beyond.”
Hoosiers can visit NextLevelJobs.org to apply for training grants, which cover the cost of tuition and fees for working adults to earn a high-value certificate at Ivy Tech Community College or Vincennes University. According to Steuerwald, jobseekers can connect to local training and resources to find jobs in high-demand industries, including advanced manufacturing, building and construction, health and life sciences, IT and business services, and transportation and logistics.
“With these grants, Hoosiers can invest in their futures without straining their budgets,” Steuerwald said. “This is a great opportunity to save thousands of dollars while earning credentials that open up doors to employment.”
The IvyTech campuses in Indianapolis offer students the opportunity to earn a certificate or technical certificate in accounting, aviation manufacturing, business administration and more. For information, visit IvyTech.edu/Indianapolis. A learning site is located in Avon and provides opportunities for students to take general education, business and prerequisite courses for many Ivy Tech degrees and credentials.
According to Thompson, businesses in high-demand industries can apply for Employer Training Grants, which provide $5,000 for each employee who is trained, hired and retained for six months.
“We will need a strong and prepared workforce,” Thompson said. “Hoosiers wanting to learn skills in some of our most sought-after careers should consider using the grants through Next Level Jobs.”
Students interested in attending Ivy Tech have until June 8 to enroll in summer courses, and the summer session will run through Aug. 1. Anyone interested in opportunities through Vincennes University can register for the second summer session through July 2. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, all courses will be offered online.
Hoosiers can learn more about eligibility requirements and apply for a Workforce Ready Grant or Employer Training Grant at NextLevelJobs.org. Anyone who needs help with the application process can call 317-715-9007 to speak one-on-one with a financial aid expert for free through INvestEd.