State Partners With Ivy Tech to Get Help to Hoosiers Affected by COVID-19

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By Dr. Sue Ellspermann, President, Ivy Tech Community College, Teresa Lubbers, Commissioner, Indiana Commission for Higher Education , Fred Payne, Commissioner, Indiana Department of Workforce Development

Muncie, IN—We know that Hoosiers are facing many challenges due to COVID-19. Some have lost their jobs and others may not be able to return to the position they once had because the job requirements have changed.

“In This Together” is the charge we often hear to collectively fight this virus. In that spirit, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development (DWD), the Indiana Commission for Higher Education (CHE) and Ivy Tech Community College are partnering to help Hoosiers whose economic positions have been negatively impacted by the coronavirus.

The State is providing hope and opportunity to those who need it most with free training and education at Ivy Tech Community College through Indiana’s Next Level Jobs Workforce Ready Grant—a program focused on providing education and training in high-demand fields that lead to good jobs.

To reach more Hoosiers more quickly, Indiana is directing federal COVID-19 recovery funds to the Workforce Ready Grant, and this month the State will reach out directly to those in need and share information about how to take advantage of these free training and educational opportunities. Hoosiers can enroll at Ivy Tech right now and classes begin October 26.

Hoosiers can sign-up and earn credentials in five high-demand fields: IT & Business Services, Advanced Manufacturing, Logistics & Transportation, Health & Life Sciences, and Building & Construction. These are fields poised for growth in our state in both the near- and long-term.

Ivy Tech has a proven track record of preparing workers for careers in these sectors and is responding to the needs of today’s students by offering classes online, face-to-face, and via a hybrid model. Individuals can often complete programs and earn credentials in just a few months. And, Ivy Tech has simplified its enrollment process so that Hoosiers can get started easily and finish quickly.

To make sure those who enroll in a Workforce Ready Grant program complete successfully and find good jobs, Ivy Tech will provide career coaching services, tutoring, advising and other support services. This is especially important for adults who are entering college for the first time or re-entering after many years in the workforce. For these Hoosiers, the whole process can be overwhelming and intimidating.

Robert Lindley is one of those Hoosiers. He enrolled at Ivy Tech after his wife got furloughed twice during the COVID-19 pandemic. Armed only with the GED he earned in the early 80s, Robert knew he needed more education to advance at work and ensure economic stability for himself and his family. Ivy Tech helped him enroll in a Workforce Ready Grant program and earn a certificate in business administration.

In his own words, “Next Level Jobs and Ivy Tech gave me the training and skills I needed to take my career to the next level.” Robert used his certificate to earn a promotion, and he and his family have greater economic security even in these uncertain times.

Robert is just one example of thousands of Hoosiers from all walks of life who can take advantage of this opportunity to earn a free credential and improve their lives. The time to take the next step is now.

To learn more how you can take your career to the next level, visit