Herbert announces Talent Ready Utah grant program & executive board

Gov. Gary R. Herbert has announced Talent Ready Utah’s first steps in working toward his goal of filling 40,000 new high-skill, high-paying jobs in Utah over the next four years.

The governor announced that the Utah Cluster Acceleration Partnership will become the grant program for Talent Ready Utah, with more than $2.1 million in grant funding available for the purpose of developing and enhancing programs to meet industry needs, building career pathway programs and providing work-based learning opportunities.

“The Talent Ready Utah grant program unveiled today is a collaborative effort to improve both our education system and workforce in Utah,” said Gov. Herbert. “The program seeks to align our efforts to provide a pipeline of future talent and meet the needs of Utah businesses.”

Money for the grant program comes from the Department of Workforce Services’ job growth fund, which is dedicated by the legislature for the purpose of investing back into the workforce. Grants from this program have helped develop or expand more than 170 training programs, creating capacity for over 5,800 individuals to receive industry-recognized credentials.

“Through these grants everyone wins,” says Jon Pierpont, executive director of the Department of Workforce Services. “Students get hands on experience which prepares them for employment. Education receives support from local industry to build programs. Businesses are able to help students obtain the training necessary to fulfill their needs.”

The governor also announced that the following individuals will serve as Talent Ready Utah’s executive board:   

  • Chair – Tami Pyfer, education advisor to Gov. Herbert
  • Vice Chair – Val Hale, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED)
  • Members – Jon Pierpont (Workforce Services), Dave Buhler (Higher Education), Dave Woolstenhulme (UCAT), Sydnee Dickson (Public Education) and Vance Checketts (Industry)

“Utah is leading the way in best practices for work-based learning programs, and Talent Ready Utah will build upon this momentum,” said Val Hale, GOED executive director. “With the right partners at the table and grants to help successfully launch these programs, Talent Ready Utah is poised to accomplish the governor’s goal.”

For more information about Talent Ready Utah and applying for the grants, visit www.talentreadyutah.com.