LEAP program seeks to better link higher education, industry to enhance Drive to 55 effort
NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam today announced the recipients of the Labor Education Alignment Program (LEAP) competition, a state effort focused on increasing opportunities for Tennesseans to obtain a certificate or degree beyond high school that is aligned with the needs of the workforce in their communities.

“These types of intentional partnerships between local agencies and their colleges or TCATS are what we want to see across the state as a significant piece of the Drive to 55 initiative,” Haslam said. “Tying the training and skills that our colleges are teaching directly to current workforce needs will help more Tennesseans qualify for good paying, high quality jobs.”
Below is a list of LEAP Grant Recipients:
Local Agency                                                                         Higher Ed Institution              Grant Amount
East Tennessee Development District                                   Roane State CC                     $970,000.00
Greater Memphis Alliance for a Competitive Workforce         Southwest Tennessee CC     $743,500.00
Jackson Regional Partnership                                                Jackson State CC                  $900,000.00
Nashville Technology Council                                                 Nashville State CC                 $850,000.00
North Tennessee Workforce Board                                        Nashville State CC                 $992,037.00
Northwest Tennessee Workforce Board                                 Dyersburg State CC               $850,000.00
Smoky Mountain Area Workforce Board                                 Walters State CC                   $988,000.00
South Central Tennessee Development District                     TCAT Shelbyville                    $970,000.00
South Central Tennessee Workforce Alliance                        TCAT- Pulaski                        $970,000.00
South Central Tennessee Workforce Alliance                        Columbia State CC                 $135,918.00
Southeast Tennessee Development District                           TCAT Athens                          $946,280.00
Upper Cumberland Human Resource Agency                         TCAT Livingston                    $684,000.00
Funded by a $10 million appropriation by the General Assembly, the LEAP competition required applicants to respond to a competitive Request for Proposals that was released in September. Proposals were reviewed and selected by the Governor’s Workforce Subcabinet, consisting of Commissioners and staff from the following agencies:
–         Tennessee Board of Regents
–         Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development
–         Tennessee Department of Education
–         Tennessee Department of Human Services
–         Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development
–         Tennessee Higher Education Commission.

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