LIMA — Lt. Gov. Jon Husted was in Lima on Wednesday to promote a new workforce initiative that will reimburse employers who pay to retrain or upskill employees with in-demand industry credentials.
“We’re creating jobs at a faster pace than we’re recruiting employees to fill them,” Husted said during a workforce roundtable hosted by the Lima/Allen County Chamber of Commerce.
The problem, Husted said, involves both demographics and skills, which continue to advance as technology changes. That led to the creation of TechCred, a new workforce initiative that encourages companies to pay their entry-level and mid-level workers to earn industry credentials.
The DeWine administration set a goal to fund the completion of 10,000 micro-degrees per year.
TechCred will reimburse employers up to $30,000 in training-related expenses, or $2,000 per employee, in the first round of the program, which opened Oct. 1.
The program has identified 150 micro-degrees, or industry credentials that can be completed within one year, in manufacturing, construction, military applications, robotics and automation, healthcare technology and information technology. That list may grow as employers identify more skills currently lacking in the state’s workforce.
“This is part of building that culture and capacity in Ohio to make education and job training a lifelong process, not just rhetorically but practically,” said Husted, who oversees the Office of Workforce Transformation.
The TechCred initiative is part of a broader push for industry credentials within Gov. Mike DeWine’s administration.
The administration has set aside $50 million over two years to increase the number of high school students graduating with in-demand credentials by helping cover the costs of industry exams.
Husted is also leading DeWine’s InnovateOhio initiative, which seeks to streamline government data, expand broadband access and make Ohio a top state for innovation and entrepreneurship.
Reach Mackenzi Klemann at 567-242-0456.