The Urban League of Greater Madison got a huge boost at its annual Unity Picnic on July 20 when Caleb Frostman, secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development, made the exciting announcement of two new grants being awarded to the Urban League totaling over $318,000.
The grants will support Urban League programs in the areas of construction and biotechnology and were part of the Wisconsin Fast Forward worker training grant program which helps address the crucial need for skilled workers in Wisconsin by focusing on training and connecting job-seekers with in-demand careers.
The Exact Sciences Training grant totaled $120,810 and will go towards training 90 un/under-employed individuals who will join Exact Sciences’ fight against colorectal cancer as entry-level biological technicians, customer care representatives, and more.
The partnership will also take advantage of the recent investment made by the City of Madison in establishing the new Park Edge/Park Ridge Employment Center located just blocks away from Exact Sciences new state-of-the-art laboratory.
The second grant, for $197,774, will help the Construction and Apprenticeship Readiness Initiative prepare 100 job seekers for construction, skilled trades apprenticeship, and commercial driver’s license (CDL) careers. Training will be provided through a partnership between the Urban League, Latino Academy for Workforce Development, and Operation Fresh Start.
Ten area employers have already agreed to help with training and hire graduates including Hill Electric, Middleton Cross-Plains Area School District, Faith Technologies, Stevens Construction, Westphal Electric, Dave Jones, J.H. Findorff & Son, Ideal Builders, Lake City Glass, General Heating and Air Conditioning, and Lycon.