CHEYENNE - Many local businesses are working hard to make it through recent economic challenges and to both train and retain their employees. Businesses are only as strong as the people who make them up, and employers invest time and resources to train employees in order to remain competitive in their industry. The Department of Workforce Services (DWS) recognizes the importance of training and can help offset the cost of training opportunities for Wyoming businesses.
With the goal of supporting Wyoming businesses and organizations in building a stronger workforce, DWS encourages businesses to learn more about the Workforce Development Training Fund (WDTF) and Apprenticeship State Expansion (ASE) grant programs. The WDTF has been in existence since 2007, and the ASE was recently created.
"The Workforce Development Training Fund grants and the Apprenticeship State Expansion grants provide excellent opportunities for businesses to grow and for employees to increase their value to their employers," said DWS WDTF Program Lead, Sharon Geissler.
The WDTF is a unique Wyoming-based program connecting employers with professional development opportunities to increase employee skills. The grants specifically created to support Wyoming businesses include:
- Business Training Grants - Teach new skills or re-train current employees; Upgrade the skills of your current employees
- Pre-Hire Grants - Train potential employees before job placement
- Internship Grants â€“ Structured, work-based learning experiences to enhance knowledge and skills
- Apprenticeship Grants - Development of an industry-specific workforce for businesses or industries where there is a shortage of skilled workers
The ASE program is dedicated to showing the benefits of apprentice training by providing funding that helps offset apprenticeship costs.
Many businesses and training providers have taken advantage of WDTF and ASE grants, and those entities have seen the positive difference the grants can make for Wyoming workers.
"At Visably, we recognize internships as a powerful recruiting tool," said Chris Dickey, CEO of the search engine software company, Visably. "The grant opportunities provided by DWS have allowed us to expand our talent pool ... We appreciate the opportunities the program affords and look forward to working with DWS in the future."
To learn more about these programs and grants, visit www.trainwyo.org or call (307) 777-8717.