Pritzker awards $13 million for Illinois Works Grant expansion
QUINCY (WGEM) - Gov. J.B. Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity announced on Friday that they are awarding $13 million to 30 recipients to expand the Illinois Works Pre-apprenticeship Program.
The Illinois Works Pre-apprenticeship Program creates a qualified talent pipeline of diverse candidates in construction and the building trades.
The program is will serve up to 1,400 pre-apprentices, which is a 40% increase since last year. Impact Global Inc. in Quincy is one of the new grantees for the program. They are set to receive $400,000.
“The Illinois Works program aims to break barriers down for more women and people of color to take advantage of the thousands of jobs created by our state’s nation-leading infrastructure investments, while simultaneously creating a sustainable pipeline of qualified workers for an industry that is booming,” Pritzker said. “These are the types of strategic investments that ensure we have a workforce ready to take the jobs available right now in fields that offer growth for the future. And most importantly, it keeps our state’s best assets — our people — at the forefront of economic progress.”
The program was started in 2021 to increase the diversity and access to apprenticeship programs. As outlined in statute, the Illinois Works Pre-Apprenticeship program was specifically designed to increase access to good-paying jobs in the trades for historically underrepresented populations.
“Opportunities represent growth, the path to becoming your best self, and the ability to contribute to one’s family and community. This program provides that kind of life-enhancing chance for people from diverse backgrounds and regions,” said Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton. “Thank you to the Governor and DCEO for continuing to involve local government and stakeholders, along with developing legacy partnerships, in order to provide programs and jobs that broaden access for all people to be part of work that builds a better Illinois.”
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