New Funding for Student Workforce Training

12/22/2020
Harrisburg, PA – Today, Governor Tom Wolf announced that The Challenge Program, Inc. (TCP) in
Cambria County was approved for $143,000 in funding through Pennsylvania’s Manufacturing
Training-to-Career program, a program that helps companies identify and train a skilled workforce
through targeted programs and services.
“Pennsylvania’s manufacturing industry powers our economy, and provides stable, good-paying
jobs to workers across the commonwealth,” said Gov. Wolf. “As we look toward the future, we
know that this industry will be more important than ever, and it’s critical that we help today’s
students make the connections they need for tomorrow’s careers.”
The funding will allow 11,000 students in western Pennsylvania to more closely interact with
manufacturers and receive two years of programming and increased workforce development
connections. TCP’s Manufacturing Awareness Program helps students in grades 10-12 at
participating high schools learn more about local manufacturers, gain a greater understanding of
opportunities in manufacturing and specic positions that manufacturers are seeking to ll
locally, and obtain the training/educational pathways to enter those careers. Students at 30 high
schools in 10 counties are currently partnered with TCP and manufacturing businesses.
“At TCP we connect business and education while motivating students to develop good habits
required to succeed in school and in their future careers. A major part of this mission is a focus on
high-growth industries, including manufacturing. This project will allow TCP and our business
partners to have a greater impact on the career and training decisions that students start making
before they graduate,” said Sara Deyarmin Jones, Director of Program Development at The
Challenge Program, Inc.
Manufacturers in Pennsylvania account for 12 percent of the commonwealth’s total output, and
according to the Manufacturing Institute Report (Deloitte), 84 percent of manufacturing
executives believe there is a talent shortage in the United States. While TCP is a motivational
awareness program, partnerships often result in job creation. Since 2016, TCP has connected more
than 20 students with employment in manufacturing.
Governor Wolf’s Manufacturing PA initiative was launched in October 2017, and since then has
funded 48 projects and invested more than $10.5 million through the Training-to-Career
program. Training-to-Career grants support projects that result in short-term work-readiness,
job placement, or the advancement of manufacturing. The Manufacturing PA Training-toCareer program works collaboratively with local manufacturers to identify and teach missing
essential skills for entry level applicants seeking manufacturing employment, engage youth or
those with barriers to career opportunities in manufacturing, and or advance capacity for local
or regional manufacturers.
MEDIA CONTACT: Lyndsay Kensinger, Governor’s Ofce –
RA-GVGOVPRESS@pa.gov casesmith@pa.gov