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Photo via TechHire
Photo via TechHire

Last March, the White House announced $100 million in grants to support President Obama’s TechHire initiative. Today, the Department of Labor is opening up the applications for those grants.

According to the White House statement, the DOL competition plans to award the $100 million to about 30 to 40 grant recipients to “pilot and scale innovative partnerships between employers, labor organizations, community colleges, and other training providers, local and state governments, the workforce system, non-profits and faith-based organizations.”

At least $50 million of that grant money will go toward programs for young Americans, 17-29, with “barriers to training and employment” that will help prepare them for jobs in tech, health care and advanced manufacturing.

A multifaceted approach that brings together government and the private sector, TechHire can be implemented through universities, community colleges and even coding boot camps and online courses, with the ultimate goal to train and mobilize young people for careers in tech as quickly as possible.

Organizations applying for the TechHire grants should be able to demonstrate that they can expand access to accelerated learning programs in tech, expand hiring practices to be more inclusive, offer specialized strategies to help trainees overcome barriers, and help connect people with jobs, among other factors.

Photo via TechHire/Participating U.S. communities
Photo via TechHire/Participating U.S. communities

Since TechHire kicked off, the White House reports that 35 cities, states and rural areas with 500 employer partners have joined the initiative.

A few organizations that have already joined the initiative include “accelerated training providers Dev Bootcamp, Hack Reactor, Microsoft, Treehouse Island, Inc., and Udacity will all be expanding free or discounted training slots for underserved communities and individuals,” according to the TechHire site.

According to the White House DOL, today “over half a million job openings are in information technology fields such as software development, network administration, and cybersecurity,” and the average job that requires IT skills pays about 50 percent more than the average private-sector job.

“Over six million young Americans between the ages of 16 and 24 are out of school and work, which represents a significant untapped resource of productivity and talent for the country,” the White House statement reports.

Is your organization interested in getting involved? Go to TechHire Grants Competition application page to learn more.

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