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Two Memphis area programs receive nearly $37 million from federal grants for workforce training

Workforce Mid-South will get $21.5 million and Persevere in Memphis has been awarded $15.4 million as part of the American Rescue Plan’s Good Jobs Challenge.
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Two Memphis area groups are getting big grants as part of the $500 million American Rescue Plan’s Good Jobs Challenge, according to the U.S. Secretary of Commerce.

Below is a look at the organizations getting the grants and what the money will go towards.

Workforce Mid-South

Workforce Mid-South will get $21.5 million, which will be used to set up three Accelerated Skills Training (AST) Centers serving East Arkansas, North Mississippi, and West Tennessee. The goal of the centers is to offer skills training that’s the same quality as traditional education models - but in less time: four to 24 weeks.

"This is a pivotal moment in workforce development for the Memphis region. This grant provides much-needed on-ramps for adults seeking to upskill with industry certifications they need to succeed in the industries that drive our economy,” said Greater Memphis Chamber Senior Vice President of Workforce Development Amity Schuyler in a news release. “Employers in the region and businesses looking to call Memphis home should also celebrate this announcement. I truly believe that Memphis will ultimately boast the most skilled and robust workforce of all metros in the U.S."

Learn more about Workforce Mid-South at https://workforcemidsouth.com/.


Persevere in Memphis has been awarded $15.4 million, which will go to support the Tennessee Technology Workforce Alliance.

The alliance is an information technology training program for ‘justice-impacted Americans’ which provides intensive skills training and work-based learning. Employers help design the curriculum and provide on-the-job training, then hire graduates.

“The Good Jobs Challenge is proud to fund this workforce training initiative in Tennessee,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Y. Castillo. “Led by Persevere, this program is bringing together information technology employers to provide high quality training to provide intensive skills training and work-based learning to justice-impacted Americans.”

Learn more about Persevere at https://www.perseverenow.org/.

Other recipients

A total of 32 training partnerships across the country received portions of the $500 million from the American Rescue Plan Good Jobs Challenge.

Find a list of the recipients at https://eda.gov/news/press-releases/2022/08/03/good-jobs-challenge-awardees.htm.

Learn more about the grantees HERE.

“A trained workforce is essential to ensuring that the United States can compete and succeed in the 21st century,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “Thanks to funding from the American Rescue Plan, the Commerce Department is able to make once-in-a-generation investments in industry-driven, and locally-led workforce systems that will create high-quality jobs and accelerate regional economic growth, especially for underserved communities.”

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