MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) — Sen. Tina Smith (D-Minnesota) and Rep. Angie Craig (D-Minnesota) introduced joint bills Wednesday that they hope will expand workforce training partnerships between Minnesota schools and businesses.
'The 21st Century Workforce Partnerships Act' aims to help communities build partnerships to support students entering fields like manufacturing, health care and more.
Local districts would be able to apply for grant funding to build these partnerships, which would include work-based learning, on–the–job training or paid internships.
“This is the area where we have a shortage of people to fill the jobs that are being created by great Minnesota businesses, so the bill that Rep. Craig and I introduced today is geared toward filling that gap and helping people create great careers," Smith said.
According to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, Minnesota is expected to have a shortage of almost 100,000 workers by 2024.
“You know, this is an opportunity for our local high schools, our community colleges and our technical colleges to make sure that they are partnering with employers and apprenticeship programs in our local communities so that students know what all of their options are," said Craig.