MANCHESTER, NH— Recognizing the gap between low-wage workers who could benefit from workforce training and the financial challenges they often face, Manchester Community College (MCC) and the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) are piloting a new program to help people access high-demand careers. Individuals who are currently enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Employment and Training (E&T) will have an opportunity to participate in this workforce training effort.
Beginning in January, online and in-person classes will be offered through MCC and include cybersecurity, licensed nursing assistants, phlebotomy, and carpentry. In the coming months, the program will expand to include advanced manufacturing. The cost of training will be reimbursed through a federal program designed to help low-income families pay for education and certificate programs in specific high-demand jobs.
“We are honored to take part in a program to fill workforce needs for local businesses while also helping families achieve economic mobility,” explains Brian Bicknell, President of Manchester Community College. “We intend to work with DHHS to reach out directly to those who are enrolled in SNAP through our Workforce Development Center to help people register and get the training they need to advance into better-paying jobs.”
This pilot program is part of a larger nationally funded effort to combat food insecurity and work with families to permanently move off assistance programs such as SNAP.
“We have a ready workforce in place, with many families who want to advance but without access to the employment training and resources that can help them move up the ladder of employment. This program will close the gap for many workers and provide them with new opportunities for advancement,” said Lori Shibinette, DHHS Commissioner.
The Department has made $105,000 available for this unique workforce training partnership, which will be matched with federal workforce training funds as part of the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA.) If successful, New Hampshire has an opportunity to extend this program past the spring semester to offer training and education to a broader group of applicants.