The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (LWD) has named Rutgers University, Fairleigh Dickinson University, Camden County College, Rowan College at Burlington County, Rowan College at Gloucester County, and the New Jersey Institute of Technology as the recipients of $8.4 million in state grants to oversee the state’s Talent Development Centers (TDC) – creating innovative career pathways and apprenticeships in the Garden State’s seven key industries. 

“We are proud to partner with our state’s higher education institutions and trust that their knowledge and infrastructure will be able to expand career pathways and apprenticeships that integrate classroom and work-based learning leading to an industry-valued credential,” said Labor Commissioner Aaron R. Fichtner, Ph.D.

Each TDC will receive $1.2 million in state funds to serve as a “centers for excellence” as anchors for expanded, high-quality, employer-driven partnerships that involve businesses, high schools, colleges, universities, labor unions, and workforce development boards.

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Camden County College will focus on advanced manufacoturing. The New Jersey Institute of Technology will focus on construction and utlities. Rowan College at Gloucester County will focus on financial services.

Rutgers University will focus on healthcare and life sciences. Fairleigh Dickinson University will focus on retail, hospitality and tourism. Rowan College at Burlington County will focus on transportation, logistics and distribution. 

These institutions will be tasked with providing credential-focused education and training to dislocated, disadvantaged, and currently employed workers, developing partnerships with employers and establishing career pathways toward an industry-valued credential or degree. 

The Talent Development Centers were launched by LWD in 2016, with three TDCs --Advanced Manufacturing, Health Care, and Transportation, Logistics & Distribution. The expansion now to seven TDCs comes due to the program’s success.

The funding for these grants is provided by the Workforce Development Partnership (WDP) program and the supplemental Workforce Fund for Basic Skills (SWFBS). 

New Jersey’s Talent Development Centers are part of the ‘65 by 25: Many Paths, One Future’ initiative, working to build a skilled, competitive workforce by helping New Jerseyans find pathways to careers. The ‘65 by 25: Many Paths, One Future’ initiative is a collaborative effort of the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, the Department of Education, and the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education, focused on increasing the percentage of New Jersey adults who have earned an industry-valued post-secondary credential or degree from 50 percent to 65 percent by 2025.