Gov. DeSantis announces Get There Florida Workforce Education Initiative

Positions career and technical education as solution to workforce needs

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TALLAHASSEE — On Sept. 24, in celebration of Workforce Development Month, Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Florida Department of Education (FDOE) announced the launch of Get There Florida, a new workforce education initiative aimed at raising awareness of short-term but high-value career and technical education programs.

Available at GetThereFL.com, the initiative highlights the key benefits of rapid credentialing programs available to Floridians at the 28 Florida College System institutions and the 48 technical colleges and centers across Florida.

The Get There Florida Initiative is in partnership with the state’s 28 Florida College System institutions and the state’s 48 technical colleges or centers. It accelerates students’ time to completion of an in-demand but high-value industry certification or postsecondary workforce credential. Programs include advanced manufacturing, transportation and logistics, health care and information technology.

This announcement comes on the heels of the $35 million, made available through the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) Funding, through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. These rapid credentialing programs are designed to increase all of Florida’s state and technical college’s capacity to enroll and graduate students in short term, in-demand, high wage occupation, workforce programs. This will provide Floridians the opportunity to complete programs in 20 weeks or less, aiding in accelerated recovery for residents and the economy.

“I set a goal to make Florida the best state in the nation for workforce development by 2030, and the Get There Florida Initiative marks an important step toward achieving that goal,” said DeSantis. “Workforce Development Month is an appropriate time to announce this strategic initiative that works to engage Floridians in in-demand training allowing them to quickly reenter the workforce or advance their career. I look forward to continuing to work with our career and technical education centers and Florida colleges to help ensure the initiative is a success.”

“Thanks to Governor DeSantis’ leadership, Florida is a national leader in workforce education and training and is among the first in the nation to support economic recovery and prosperity through our workforce education system. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the divide between Floridians’ current skills, and the opportunity for advancement in employment. Many Floridians have signaled they want to find employment where their skills match demand from employers, especially in those in-demand fields that help communities through COVID-19. Florida’s world-class higher education system can help students ‘Get There,’ said Commissioner Richard Corcoran. “It is now time to double down on our postsecondary career and technical education programs, helping our colleges reimaging how they can contribute to workforce development. Get There accomplishes that goal.”

“As September is Workforce Development Month, we applaud the commitment of local, state, and federal partners across the public and private sectors to enhance workforce development initiatives and thank Governor DeSantis for championing these issues,” said Dane Eagle, executive director of the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. “This is the perfect time to accept the challenge of leading the Department of Economic Opportunity, and I am very grateful to the governor for the opportunity. I look forward to working with our partners to help improve the lives of Floridians and aid in diversifying Florida’s economy.”

“The CareerSource Florida network is committed to supporting our state’s businesses and helping Floridians secure rewarding employment as we work together to ensure Florida’s swift economic recovery,” said CareerSource Florida President and CEO Michelle Dennard. “We are grateful to Governor DeSantis for honoring the tireless efforts of our dedicated workforce and career education professionals by proclaiming September Workforce Development Month in Florida.”

Last year, DeSantis issued Executive Order 19-31 which set an ambitious goal for Florida to become number one in workforce education by 2030. Within the order, the Governor required the FDOE to develop a way to ensure that Florida’s current career and technical education (CTE) offerings were of high-quality and aligned with current and future workforce demand. Florida now has an opportunity to build on its successes to further strengthen CTE as an engine for economic recovery and prosperity in the state. FDOE has identified over 100 of these programs state-wide, cross-referenced with CareerSource Florida’s in-demand sector strategy efforts thanks to this grant opportunity.

At GetThereFL.com, Floridians can learn more about CTE and workforce training programs available at state and technical colleges, align their interests with a career path and connect with their local institution to enroll.

To learn more about the approved rapid credentialing plans from Florida’s colleges, visit www.fldoe.org/em-response.
See DeSantis’s Work Force Development proclamation at www.flgov.com.

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