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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $17.5 Million to Boost Workforce Training Programs in Southeast Missouri Through American Rescue Plan Good Jobs Challenge

Competition Provides Once-In-A-Generation Funding to Locally Driven, Diverse Partnerships to Create and Develop Workforce Training Programs that Support Local Economies

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo announced the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $17.5 million American Rescue Plan Good Jobs Challenge grant to the city of Springfield, Missouri, to further the Quadra-Regional Workforce Alliance, a workforce training program to support the region’s healthcare, trucking, and education industries.

This program will implement three sector partnerships to build and train the local workforce in Springfield. Through partnerships with local employers and training programs, the Quadra-Regional Workforce Alliance will train workers in the healthcare, trucking, and education industries with a focus on communities of color, women, and people with disabilities.

“The Biden-Harris Administration is making once-in-a-generation investments in high-quality, locally led workforce systems to dramatically transform America’s communities,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “The Good Jobs Challenge is bringing together key sector partnerships with local employers and workforce training programs to prepare workers to secure good-paying jobs.”

“The Economic Development Administration is committed to supporting communities as they develop locally-focused systems to train American workers,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Y. Castillo. “The Quadra-Regional Workforce Alliance will create three sector partnerships to build and train the local workforce with a focus on communities of color, women, and people with disabilities.”

“Through this funding to the Quadra-Regional Workforce Alliance in Springfield, more Missourians will be given the chance to receive top-tier training in three crucial industrial sectors – health care, trucking, and education,” said Governor Mike Parson. “Missouri is committed to supporting these industries and ensuring workers have access to training and education programs. This grant is a great addition to our efforts to accomplish just that and build a strong state and local economy.”

This grant is funded through the American Rescue Plan Good Jobs Challenge. The program awarded grants to 32 worker-centered, industry-led workforce training partnerships across the country. The $500 million program is expanding opportunities for more Americans to access and secure good-paying jobs by investing in innovative approaches to advance worker-centered, industry-led workforce training partnerships.

The 32 awardee projects were selected from a competitive pool of 509 applicants. By partnering with stakeholders such as labor unions, community colleges and industry, these projects will solve for local talent needs, increase the supply of trained workers and help workers secure jobs in 15 key industries that are essential to U.S. supply chains, global competitiveness, and regional development. Through a holistic, integrated partnership approach, these projects will provide tangible opportunities and security for American workers, focusing on serving and supporting a broad range of underserved communities and connecting workers with the training, skills, and support services needed to successfully secure a good job. For more information on the grantees, please visit our fact sheet. (PDF)

The Good Jobs Challenge is part of a suite of American Rescue Plan programs developed by EDA to equitably distribute its $3 billion allocation to assist communities nationwide in their efforts to 4 a better America by accelerating economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic and building local economies that will be more resilient to future economic shocks.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA invests in communities and supports regional collaboration in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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