Kentucky’s workforce training program is one of the best in the United States, according to the results of a national survey of industrial site selection consultants.
The survey, which was published in the August issue of Expansion Management magazine, placed Kentucky in the No. 5 spot. It is the fifth consecutive year that Kentucky has ranked in the top 10. Last year, the Bluegrass State came in at No. 8.
In the annual survey, consultants were asked to identify states where they found the best workforce training programs while investigating potential sites for their clients. Programs were judged in terms of financial value, ease of usage and applicability.
“Workers are the linchpin of any operation and states don’t stand a chance of attracting any company from any industry unless their workers are properly trained,” said Ken Krizner, managing editor of Expansion Management. “New employees are expected to be cost-effective and earning money for the company from almost the first day on the job. Workforce training programs must reflect that philosophy, and there is no question that Kentucky’s workforce training program exemplifies that philosophy.”
Expansion Management highlighted the Bluegrass State Skills Corporation (BSSC), the primary agency within the Cabinet for Economic Development whose mission is to stimulate economic development through programs of skills training to meet the needs of business and industry. BSSC partners with other employment and training organizations, including the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS), to tailor comprehensive programs of skills training services for new, expanding and existing companies.
In addition, the Jobs Retention Act passed by the 2007 General Assembly further underscores the state’s efforts to provide a skilled workforce. The legislation provides BSSC with up to $8 million in additional funds, for the remainder of the next two years, to fund training grants for eligible companies.
“No two industrial projects are the same,” noted Gov. Ernie Fletcher in announcing the survey results. “Our ability to provide flexible and customized training that companies require sets us apart.”