The Wyoming Education Attainment Council Executive Committee announced today the launch of the Wyoming Works program. The primary purpose of Wyoming Works is to provide programs and resources for adult students to learn a skill that leads to secure employment.
Wyoming Works was signed into law following the legislative session ending in March. The legislature allocated $5 million to support the program; $3 million of which will be used for individual student grants, and the balance will support program development. The allocation will be shared by all seven community colleges.
“I am excited about the launch of this program. We are not only advancing our post-secondary attainment goals but also ensuring Wyoming citizens have high-quality credentials to be competitive in the workforce,” said Executive Committee Co-Chair and President of Northwest College Stefani Hicswa.
Programs that qualify under Wyoming Works are those which meet labor and economic development needs, and may be for-credit or non-credit. Many existing programs will qualify and new programs will be developed.
“Businesses across the state are eager to demonstrate their workforce needs to community colleges to ensure the Wyoming Works program is a success for the newly trained employees, the schools that train them, and the businesses that hire them. This is especially true in the construction industry where private partners who have spent years working on workforce development issues are already engaged in the effort,” said Katie Legerski, Executive Director of the Wyoming Contractors Association.
Length of the programs will vary, from a two-week Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) certificate to a two-year Welding degree. “This is the type of bold leadership that demonstrates the strength of the partnership among education, industry, and policy-makers. Employers are sharing with us their needs and our community colleges are ready to respond,” said Sandy Caldwell, Executive Director of the Wyoming Community College Commission.
The WCCC will manage rules and guidelines for the program, as well as the distribution of funds. During the commission’s regular meeting in Riverton, Wyo. June 13, initial rules were passed unanimously, effectively launching the program. Student grants are now available, and additional information can be found by contacting any of the community
Visit NWCCD’s Wyoming Works page for available programs, eligibility requirements, and more information.