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IN receives additional funds to retrain workers

Indiana is getting more federal grant money to boost its efforts retraining out-of-work Hoosiers for new economy jobs.

A new $2.4 million federal grant adds to a $58 million state effort for retraining laid-off workers.  Out of the 30 states receiving the U.S. Department of Labor grant, Indiana is receiving the second-highest per capita percentage of those dollars.  Governor Mike Pence says that’s in part because there are more than a million Hoosiers who lack the skills necessary to find one of the thousands of unfilled jobs in the state.

However, he says focusing on free or low-cost education for out-of-work adults is only part of the solution in curbing the state’s unemployment rate, which remains above 8%.

“We also want to make sure that our high schools, our post-secondary institutions are creating more effective pathways so that our young people are entering the workforce with the background and the training that they need.”

Pence says over the last decade, high quality career and vocational education programs have sprung up throughout the state, but he says it’s been almost solely a product of regional efforts. 

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.