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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $22.8 Million to Develop a Healthcare, Energy, and Construction Workforce Training Program in Southeastern Pennsylvania 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 $22.8 million American Rescue Plan Good Jobs Challenge grant to Philadelphia Works Inc., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to develop The Coordinated Southeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Development System, a tri-sector workforce training coalition involving the healthcare, clean energy, and construction industries.

Through partnership with leading employers, this coalition will create pathways into well-paying, union jobs with a focus on underserved communities in Southeastern Pennsylvania.

“President Biden's American Rescue Plan funding through the Good Jobs Challenge will provide necessary investments in key sectors that will help build economic resilience and prosperity for Americans,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “This EDA grant creates an incredible opportunity to place individuals in quality jobs and bolster local industries.”

“The Good Jobs Challenge reflects the Economic Development Administration’s commitment to helping communities rebuild, grow and thrive,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Y. Castillo. “This coalition will bring together crucial regional industries to develop good-paying jobs for the people of southeastern Pennsylvania.”

“This $22.8 million investment is targeted – it’s going to reach a community that’s been historically underserved and provide residents there with good paying jobs in booming industries,” said Governor Tom Wolf. “I’m beyond grateful to the Biden Administration for giving a hand-up to success for so many deserving Pennsylvanians. These are the investments that will give Pennsylvanians the tools they need to thrive tomorrow.”

“As Pennsylvania continues its recovery from the pandemic, our communities depend on a qualified, sustainable workforce to support economic revitalization. Thanks to the American Rescue Plan Good Jobs Challenge, Philadelphia Works will receive more than $22 million for robust job training programs in critical industries like health care, energy and infrastructure throughout the region,” said Senator Bob Casey. “I was proud to advocate for PhilaWorks and I will continue to work with the Biden Administration to support job creation and economic development in Southeastern Pennsylvania.”

“This is more good news resulting from President Biden’s American Rescue Plan that I voted for! Plenty of Philadelphians who want to work just need training that matches the needs of local employers,” said Congressman Dwight Evans (PA-03). “This is a win-win for both our residents and businesses.”

“I’m so pleased to see funding from the American Rescue Plan continue to flow into Pennsylvania to advance our region’s workforce priorities and accelerate equitable economic recovery,” said Congresswoman Mary Gay Scanlon (PA-05). “This investment from the Economic Development Administration will have an incredible impact on Philadelphia Works’ efforts to design and launch an inclusive, streamlined, and coordinated workforce development training program that will grow economic opportunities for all Pennsylvanians.”

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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