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Viewpoint: Preparing Wisconsinites for in-demand jobs

Rep. Ron Kind and representatives from the Wisconsin Technical College Board and students. Submitted photo

As we work together to expand job opportunities in Wisconsin, one important factor is to increase access to affordable job training programs. Last week I heard about the importance and availability of job training programs from representatives and students from Chippewa Valley Technical College, Mid-State Technical College, Southwest Wisconsin Technical College, and Western Technical College.

While our Wisconsin technical colleges are doing great work providing students with hands-on experience, there is more that can be done to help them expand their job training programs. Recently, I introduced the Education and Workforce Innovation Act, which will encourage partnerships with students, schools and businesses to bring job-training programs to Wisconsin communities.

The bill will establish a grant program to encourage eligible businesses to start job training programs for high-demand industries, such as manufacturing. It will also provide students with customized training, hands-on experience, career development, and a path to employment after graduating. By bringing businesses and schools together to expand access to job training programs we give Wisconsin students the opportunity to earn a better life.

In the coming months, as Congress works on reauthorizing the Higher Education Act, I look forward to working with students, parents and educators to help prepare Wisconsin students for success in their education.