joyce 090122ESSEX – The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity has announced a grant program involving $15 million in Illinois Works Pre-Apprenticeship funding to expand job training and career opportunities. State Senator Patrick Joyce is encouraging organizations in the construction industry to apply for this grant opportunity.

“This is a great program that could really benefit small businesses that qualify across our communities,” said Joyce (D-Essex). “The funding has the chance to help people within local organizations expand their opportunities while also boosting the economy of the state .”

The Illinois Works Program was created in 2019 and is designed to promote diversity, inclusion and use of apprentices in state-funded capital projects.

This year, the state budget allocated $8 million in funding for new organizations that train, educate and help prospective workers navigate the job search process, and $7 million for programs that currently receive funding but have exceeded performance benchmarks.

“I think it is important for businesses, as well as employees, to feel fulfilled and uplifted in their careers,” said Joyce. “I am inviting organizations in the area to apply for this funding that could really help them in the long run.”

For more information, visit the DCEO website.