WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Barbara A. Mikulski (both D-Md.) today lauded the announcement from President Obama that the Department of Labor (DOL) has awarded $7 million in funding to help prepare students in Prince George’s County for success in post-secondary education and in a competitive workforce. Announced from Bladensburg High School, the grant was awarded through DOL’s Youth CareerConnect Program.
“Investing in our students and connecting them early with future careers is a win-win for Prince George’s County and the entire region. We have limited federal resources, but training students in the high-skill quality jobs that are in demand locally, now and in the future, should always be a priority,” said Senator Cardin. “I am proud that these grants were awarded on a competitive basis and that Maryland is recognized as being an epicenter of economic and technologic growth.”
“I believe that in America, if you’re ready to work and want a job, you should have one. This is smart funding that will help young Marylanders get the skills and training they will need to get good jobs,” said Senator Mikulski, Chairwoman of the Senate Appropriations Committee which funds DOL. “This will help build Maryland’s workforce and make our economy stronger.”
Youth CareerConnect schools will strengthen America’s talent pipeline by supporting stronger high school, postsecondary, workforce investment system, and employer partnerships that deliver:
- Robust Employer Engagement & Work-Based Learning: Youth CareerConnect awards will provide students with the education and training that combines rigorous academic and career-focused curriculum to increase students’ employability skills. Employer partners will provide work-based learning, job-shadowing, and mentoring opportunities to ensure students’ learning is relevant.
- A Focus on High-Demand Industries, Including STEM: Youth CareerConnect awards will create a pathway for students to enter high-demand industries such as information technology, healthcare, and other STEM-related and manufacturing fields. Grantees will ensure recruitment and retention of underrepresented groups including girls and minorities to expand the talent pool for these high-demand occupations.
- Integration of Post-secondary Education and Training: Youth CareerConnect awards will enable high school students to participate in education and training that leads to credit toward a post-secondary degree or certificate and an industry recognized credential, where appropriate.
# # #