Wisconsin Fast Forward is a $15 million grant program for employer-led, customer working training projects. The grant will provide assistance that cannot be met through an existing program. Grants will be awarded to maximize the impact of funds in catalyzing local collaboration and also encourage the development of sustained pipelines that directly align with employer needs. The jobs of the 21st century economy depend on these training programs. The Department of Workforce Development’s (DWD) new Office of Skills Development (OSD) will administer the program.
The Walworth County Economic Development Alliance (WCEDA) encourages businesses to apply for this grant. The grant will provide funds for the business to train new or existing workers to be competitive in their industry.
“One issue we face at the county level is hiring workers who have the right skills for the job. This grant will help businesses in training future employees these skills,” said WCEDA Executive Director Derek D’Auria.
Elkhorn based business Precision Plus received a grant in March 2014. On March 28, 2014, the DWD published the following proclamation:
“DWD intends to award Precision Plus, Inc. in Elkhorn a grant of $10,379 for their Next Generation of CNC Machinists in Walworth County project to train 8 high school students for careers as CNC Machinists. Successful trainees will receive National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS) certification. Pupils who successfully complete the program will be provided placement opportunities at Precision Plus.”
Blackthorne Capital Management in Whitewater is also a recipient of the Fast Forward grant.
There are four different due dates for applications. Application deadlines and a range of possible grant awards follow:
- July 2: Manufacturing and Related Occupations, $5,000 to $400,000
- August 20: Financial Services and Related Occupations, $5,000 to $400,000
Information Technology, Systems Security, Data Analytics and Related Occupations, $5,000 to $400,000
Human Services, Customer Service and Related Occupations, $5,000 to $400,000
Health Science, Health Care and Related Occupations, $5,000 to $400,000
- October 1: Transportation, Logistics, Distribution and Related Occupations, $5,000 to $400,000
Architecture, Construction and Related Occupations, $5,000 to $400,000
Agriculture, Food, Natural Resources and Related Occupations, $5,000 to $400,000
- October 1: Wisconsin Small Business Occupations with 50 or fewer full-time employees, $5,000 to $50,000
For more information, call WCEDA at 262-741-8527 or visit the Wisconsin Fast Forward website.