Department of Labor & Industry (L&I) Secretary Jennifer Berrier announced grant awards totaling nearly $740,000 to local organizations committed to connecting Pennsylvania veterans with family-sustaining jobs.
“Pennsylvania continues its commitment to veterans through Veterans Employment Program funding, providing modernized training and financial stability as they enter or change careers in our workforce,” Berrier said. “The partnerships we have with employers to provide industry-recognized skills training create opportunities for career advancement and success for veterans while helping to support an ever-changing yet strengthened labor market.”
Pennsylvania is home to more than 700,000 veterans, roughly 7.5% of the commonwealth’s population.
The VEP provides veterans with a greater opportunity to sharpen and broaden their skills, leading to meaningful employment after they leave the military,” said Maj. Gen. Mark Schindler, Pennsylvania’s adjutant general and head of the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. “We are thankful to the Wolf Administration for recognizing the value veterans bring to the workforce, and for partnering with L & I and other entities that are willing to make an investment in the lives and careers of men and women who served and sacrificed for our nation.”
Successful applicants identified opportunities for new and innovative projects to create veteran employment opportunities, to close funding gaps or supplement existing initiatives for more comprehensive services. Employer applicants also needed to demonstrate how they would bring together businesses, education, workforce, community, and other partners to achieve employment support for veterans.
NuPaths – $199,979
NuPaths to Tech Careers for Veterans:
NuPaths will train 24 veterans living in Beaver, Clearfield, Delaware, Fayette, Lackawanna and Lycoming counties for entry-level Software Testing Analyst and Project Analyst jobs. Programs will be in an accessible distance learning format and provide technical skills training, industry certifications, and the job search and readiness skills needed to begin an apprenticeship or full-time IT job.
Delaware County Community College – $137,692.81
Opportunities Abound, A Veterans Employment Program
A pilot project to assist approximately 30 veterans in overcoming barriers to employment or enhanced employment by supplementing existing veteran services through outreach, accessible career training for high-priority occupations and employment acquisition assistance. Through one-on-one interactions and cohort-based activities, barriers will be addressed to encourage entry into career training for and placement in stable, family-sustaining jobs. Opportunities Abound features four phases: (1) Program Orientation; (2) No Cost Industry-Specific Career Training Leading to Certification/Credentialing in High-Priority Occupations; (3) Professional Skills Development Workshops; and, (4) Pathways to Jobs and Careers Events. Employment or enhanced employment for veterans are the ultimate goals of the project.
EDSI – $200,000
Veterans Career Boost
EDSI will enroll 40 veterans in its re-branded Veterans Career Boost (VCB) program, providing skills assessment, job-readiness training, and career pathway planning to all the participants. The Veterans Career Boost project will also provide EDSI’s Construction/Skilled Trades and/or IT Career Acceleration Programs (CAPs) to 10 of those 40 participants. EDSI will continue its partnership with Peirce College to enable participants to gain college credit for training and paid employer-recognized certifications. The program will also provide incentives to veterans obtaining employment and supportive services for barrier remediation.
Veterans Leadership Program – $200,000
Veterans Employment Grant
The project aims to decrease veteran unemployment rates by providing opportunities for certificates and training in marketable job skills, connecting veterans to employers, and providing financial assistance for employment-related expenses. VLP will prioritize these services in Beaver, Fayette, and Clearfield counties because these counties fall in the top five counties in Pennsylvania with the highest veteran unemployment rates.