Vice President Biden and Department of Labor Secretary Perez announced on June 27 the release of $150 million in Department of Labor grants for 39 partnerships across the country. The awardees will launch innovative training and placement models to develop tech talent.

The Obama Administration has supported the growth of IT jobs in rural America with investments in rural broadband and other key infrastructure, and through innovative efforts like the White House TechHire Initiative, a multi-sector initiative and call to action to rapidly train Americans with the skills they need for well-paying, open tech jobs.

TechHire grants were designed to extend high quality, accelerated tech training opportunities to new communities—including over $30 million in grants for projects serving predominantly rural areas.

The grants will be used to develop programs in 25 states and Washington, DC to support innovative ways to get workers on the fastest paths to well-paying information technology and high-growth jobs in in-demand sectors like healthcare, advanced manufacturing, and financial services. The training will also serve as a way to keep and create jobs in local economies

Of these grants, $126 million will specifically target strategies designed to best support young Americans, ages 17 to 29.

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In addition to federal funding, grantees are leveraging nearly $50 million in philanthropic, private and other funding to contribute to their own local partnerships.

All of the partnerships funded engage in the following practices:

  • Expand access to accelerated learning options that provide a quick path to good jobs, such as “bootcamp”-style programs, online options, and competency-based programs.
  • Use data and innovative hiring practices to expand openness to non-traditional hiring by working with employers to build robust data on where they have the greatest needs, identify what skills they are looking for, and build willingness to hire from both nontraditional and traditional training programs.
  • Offer specialized training strategies, supportive services, and other participant-focused services that assist targeted populations to overcome barriers, including networking and job search, active job development, transportation, mentoring, and financial counseling.
  • Emphasize inclusion by leveraging the high demand for tech jobs and new training and hiring approaches to improve access to tech jobs for all citizens, including out-of-school and out-of-work young Americans, people with disabilities, people learning English as a second language, and people with criminal records.