Governor Chet Culver and Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) announced today that $3.4 million in funding is coming to Iowa Workforce Development from the U.S. Department of Labor. The funding comes from the Health Care Sector and Other High Growth and Emerging Industries Grants program to train workers in emerging jobs in the health care industry. The funding was made available by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which Senator Harkin helped to craft as a senior Senate appropriator

Through existing partnerships with Mercy College of Health Sciences, Iowa Bureau of Refugee Services and Mercy Medical Center, Iowa Workforce Development has already identified job openings for skilled workers that likely will become available in the next two years. The partnership will recruit, screen and provide training and support services to Limited English Proficient (LEP) Iowans to help them pursue careers in the health care industry. Employment services will be available via the Department of Labor’s local One Stop Career Centers, and training will be offered at community colleges and other local education providers.

Today’s announcement is part of a joint effort by the Departments of Labor and Health and Human Services to announce nearly $1 billion in Recovery Act funding to increase the use of health information technology and train workers for the health jobs of the future.