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Wolf Administration: $270,000 in Funding Awarded to Prepare Students for Careers in Manufacturing and Trades

Harrisburg, PA – Today, Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Deputy Secretary for Business Financing and Workforce Development Carol Kilko joined Evolve Youth Trades Academy, the Home Builders Association of Metro Harrisburg, and local students to announce new funding for youth pre-apprenticeships in Dauphin County.

“Now, more than ever, students must be equipped with the skills they need to obtain meaningful, family-sustaining employment, and the funding announced today will help today’s youth obtain tomorrow’s jobs,” said Deputy Secretary Carol Kilko. “The Wolf Administration’s continued investment in workforce training and development is a critical tool in bridging the gap between education and employment, and dozens of local students will benefit from the funding awarded today.”

Through the Pre-Apprentice and Apprenticeship Grant Program, $270,000 in grant funding has been approved for Evolve Youth Trades Academy to help dozens of young adults, ages 12-18, learn vocational skills in construction as well as other in-demand trades in HVAC, plumbing, carpentry, and electrical.

Evolve Youth Trades Academy creates a pathway for marginalized youth to excel, providing young adults with access skills that can produce financial stability in the manufacturing industry, job training, and educational opportunities.

“If you avoid opportunity, opportunity will avoid you,” said Patricia Robinson, Founder of Evolve Youth Trades Academy and CEO of Evolve Training and Development, LLC. “This funding will present new opportunities for Pennsylvania’s students, allowing them to gain the skills and training they need to reach a bright future with good-paying jobs.”

During the three-year program, students will split their time between in-classroom instruction and vocational on-site training. At the end of each year, they will earn a certificate, receive credit towards graduation, learn to be community leaders, and prepare for post-secondary training opportunities including college, apprenticeships, and employment. The program intends to increase attendance, promote sustainable career paths, and decrease overall truancy and drop-out rates. The program will provide qualified candidates with entry-level employment opportunities with local businesses and will create a pool of qualified candidates eligible to apply for apprenticeship programs.

“Developing the next generation of workforce is one of the seven pillars of the Home Builders Association of Metro Harrisburg,” said Kristi Walsh, Vice President of the Home Builders Association. “We are proud to sponsor the Pre-Apprentice Program of Evolve Youth Trades Academy. Together we are Building the future of our industry.”

The Pre-Apprentice and Apprenticeship Program works to increase apprenticeship availability to Pennsylvania employers to assist them with their talent recruitment and development. Funding is provided to eligible applicants for the purpose of reaching the goal of increasing apprenticeship accessibility across the state. Eligible uses of funds include expenses related to instruction that complements on-the-job learning.

For more information about the Wolf Administration’s commitment to manufacturing, visit the DCED website, and be sure to stay up-to-date with all of our agency news on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.


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