Haslam Announces Labor Education Alignment Program Grants

Tuesday, September 20, 2016 | 1:06pm

LEAP Grants support Drive to 55 by aligning workforce needs with higher education

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam today announced the recipients of the Labor Education Alignment Program (LEAP) competition, a state initiative that supports the Drive to 55 by awarding grants to community and academic partnerships formed to help communities align workforce needs with higher education.

“If we can eliminate gaps in the skills needed by local manufacturers and other companies and the types of degrees and courses offered by local community and technical colleges, we can strengthen our workforce to meet industry demands,” Haslam said. “These LEAP grants help create programs that tie specific training and skills to current workforce needs, helping more Tennesseans qualify for good, high paying jobs. This is a key piece of our Drive to 55 campaign to increase the number of Tennesseans with a postsecondary degree or credential to 55 percent by 2025.”

The General Assembly appropriated $10 million in the 2016-17 fiscal year budget for LEAP grants. Below is a list of recipients:

Local Agency                                                                           Higher Education Institution                                           Grant Amount

Smoky Mountains Area Workforce Board, LWDA 2        TCAT Morristown, Walters State Community College   $983,440

Local Workforce Development Board for Area 9             TCAT Nashville, Nashville State Community College,    $571,998              

                                                                                                      Tennessee State University  

South Central TN Workforce Alliance                                  Columbia State Community College                                 $568,426

South Central TN Workforce Alliance                                  Columbia State Community College                                 $891,536

Southeast Tennessee Development District                      Chattanooga State Community College                          $939,623

Joint Economic and Community Development                 TCAT Dickson                                                                          $400,000

Board of Cheatham County

South Central Tennessee Development District               TCAT Hohenwald                                                                   $951,790

Greater Nashville Regional Council                                      TCAT Hartsville/Lebanon                                                      $944,009

East Tennessee Development District                                 TCAT Knoxville                                                                        $970,000

Workforce Essentials, LWIA 8                                                 Volunteer State Community College                                $811,461

Southwest Tennessee Development District                     TCAT Jackson, TCAT Covington, TCAT Crump,                $999,123

                                                                                                       TCAT McKenzie, TCAT Memphis, TCAT Newbern,             

                                                                                                       TCAT Paris, TCAT Ripley, TCAT Whiteville

Blount Partnership                                                                    Pellissippi State Community College,                              $959,267

                                                                                                        Cleveland State Community College, TCAT Knoxville

The LEAP competition required applicants to respond to a competitive Request for Proposals that was released on May 4, 2016.  Proposals were reviewed and selected by the Governor’s Workforce Subcabinet, consisting of commissioners and staff from the following agencies:

Tennessee Board of Regents
Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development
Tennessee Department of Education
Tennessee Department of Human Services
Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development
Tennessee Higher Education Commission

About the Drive to 55

In 2013, Governor Haslam launched the Drive to 55 to increase the number of Tennesseans with a postsecondary degree or certificate to 55 percent by 2025. As a result, the Drive to 55 has established the Tennessee Promise program, the nation’s first scholarship and mentorship program that provides high school graduates last-dollar scholarships to attend two years of community or technical college free of tuition and fees; reduced the number of college freshmen requiring remediation through the SAILS (Seamless Alignment and Integrated Learning Support) program; provided free technical college for adults through TCAT Reconnect Grants; created Tennessee Reconnect + Complete to help more adults return to college to complete unfinished degrees; developed a more comprehensive state approach to serving student veterans; and leveraged technology to enhance classroom instruction and college advising.

Governor Haslam |Higher Education Commission